Differential climate impacts for policy-relevant limits to
global warming: the case of 1.5°C and 2°C

Robust appraisals of climate impacts at different levels of global-mean temperature increase are vital to guide assessments of dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. The 2015 Paris Agreement includes a two-headed temperature goal: “holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C.
This paper provides an assessment of key impacts of climate change at warming levels of 1.5°C and 2°C, including extreme weather events, water availability, agricultural yields, sea-level rise and risk of coral reef loss- The results reveal substantial differences in impacts between a 1.5°C and 2°C warming that are highly relevant for the assessment of dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. This article has been accepted.

Date Published
2015, October

C. F. Schleussner, T. K. Lissner, E. M. Fischer, J. Wohland, M. Perrette, A. Golly, J. Rogelj, K. Childers, J. Schewe, K. Frieler, M. Mengel, W. Hare, and M. Schaeffer

Earth System Dynamics
7, 327–351, doi:10.5194/esd-7-327-2016