IPCC Working Group I Fourth Assessment Report Summary for Policymakers
Written Summary for Policymakers
Streaming Audio-Slide Production Summary for Policymakers on the IPCC Report
Mandate and Membership of the IPCC
Recognizing the problem of potential global climate change, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) established the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 1988. It is open to all members of the UN and WMO.
The role of the IPCC is to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of risk of human-induced climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation. The IPCC does not carry out research nor does it monitor climate related data or other relevant parameters. It bases its assessment mainly on peer reviewed and published scientific/technical literature. Its role, organisation, participation and general procedures are laid down in the “Principles & Procedures!”
The IPCC has three Working Groups and a Task Force
* Working Group assesses the scientific aspects of the climate system and climate change.
* Working Group II assesses the vulnerability of socio-economic and natural systems to climate change, negative and positive consequences of climate change, and options for adapting to it.
* Working Group III assesses options for limiting greenhouse gas emissions and otherwise mitigating climate change.
* The Task Force on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories is responsible for the IPCC National Greenhouse Gas Inventories Programme.
A main activity of the IPCC is to provide in regular intervals an assessment of the state of knowledge on climate change. The IPCC also prepares Special Reports and Technical Papers on topics where independent scientific information and advice is deemed necessary and it supports the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) through its work on methodologies for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories. A number of IPCC reports are published commercially. Summaries, CD ROMs and Technical Papers can be obtained free of charge. A limited number of full reports are avaible from the IPCC Secretariat for developing countries and countries with economies in transition.