â€¢ Chance to limit warming squandered, says scientist
â€¢ World needs to prepare to cope with at least 3-4C rise
Climate change sceptics and fossil fuel companies that have lobbied against action on greenhouse gas emissions have squandered the world's chance to avoid dangerous global warming, a key adviser to the government has said.
Professor Bob Watson, chief scientist at the department for environment and rural affairs, said a decade of inaction on climate change meant it was now virtually impossible to limit global temperature rise to 2C. He said the delay meant the world would now do well to stabilise warming between 3C and 4C.
His comments come ahead of key UN negotiations on a new global climate treaty in Copenhagen next month that the UK government insists should still aim for a 2C goal, despite doubts over whether a meaningful deal can be sealed.
In an interview with the Guardian, Watson said: "Those that have opposed a deal on climate, which would include elements of the fossil fuel industry, have clearly made making a 2C target much, much harder, if not impossible. They've clearly put the world at risk of far more adverse effects of climate change."
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