Climate change: the urgency for action now

Professor Sir David King

Policy positions and interventions show global warming is still underestimated, or misunderstood. Can we still win back the chance of surviving and thriving?

In this talk, Professor Sir David King argues that ‘climate repair’ offers a scalable, safe recipe for future climate stability.  The strategy applies immediate climate repair measures: very rapid progress to net zero global emissions; additional reduction of the volume of atmospheric greenhouse gases; and halting the heating of the Earth and its oceans. ‘Climate repair’ will refreeze Earth’s poles and the glaciers of the Himalayas. It will stabilise sea level and break feedback loops that relentlessly accelerate global warming.

Net zero emissions exist as a target for about 70% of the world’s economies, over a range of timescales.  This target offers an important starting point for climate repair.  But emissions reductions must become more rapid than current proposals. And combined with speedy expansion of carbon sinks to create negative growth of atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs).

‘Net-zero’ alone is insufficient. Net-negative emissions will provide foundations for shifting current dangerous GHGs back towards pre-industrial levels that underpinned stable, hospitable climate patterns for millennia.

Professor Sir David King

Professor Sir David King is Emeritus Professor of Chemistry, University of Cambridge and Founder and Chair of the Centre for Climate Repair in the University. He is also Chair of the Climate Crisis Advisory Group; an Affiliate Partner of SYSTEMIQ Limited.

For almost two decades, Sir David has not only heroically advanced a new institutional paradigm for confronting global climate challenges, but also established scientific and practical mitigation strategies for governments, businesses, and civil society alike.

In February 2022 Sir David received the David and Betty Hamburg AAAS award for Science Diplomacy.