David Spratt

David Spratt is a Research Director for Breakthrough and co-author of Climate Code Red: The case for emergency action (Scribe 2008). His recent reports include Recount: It’s time to “Do the math” again; Climate Reality Check and Antarctic Tipping Points for a Multi-metre Sea-level Rise.

boiling water

Towards an unliveable planet: Climate’s 2023 annus horribilis

The heat and extreme climate records of 2023 shocked scientists. So where are we heading? Given current trends, the world will zoom past 2°C of warming and the Paris climate goal of limiting warming to 1.5-2°C.

February 9, 2024

boiling water

Humanity’s new era of “global boiling”: Climate’s 2023 annus horribilis

With devastating extreme heat and storms and floods, 2023 was the first year 1.5°C warmer than the 1850-1900 baseline, and both Antarctic sea-ice loss and record northern hemisphere sea-surface temperatures were way beyond the ranges projected by climate models.

February 7, 2024


IPCC: Separating the science from the politics?

What credence should be given to the most recent summary report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)? To do that, you need to separate the science from the politics that pervades the IPCC processes.

March 31, 2023

Faster, higher, hotter: What we learned about the climate system in 2022 (Parts 2 and 3)

In summary, emissions still have not peaked and are unlikely to be significantly lower in 2030 than 2020; warming of 1.5°C is likely this decade; and the emissions trend and reduction commitments are currently nowhere near keeping warming to 2°C.

March 20, 2023

Faster, higher, hotter: What we learned about the climate system in 2022 (Part 1)

Beyond all the hype and all the anxiety about climate policymaking, the upbeat newsmaking about energy transitions and the growing dread of civilisational collapse, what have we learned about the climate system in the last year?

February 27, 2023

coal plant

High-profile paper on “catastrophic” climate impacts echoes our “What Lies Beneath” analysis on fat-tail, existential risks and IPCC reticence, published four years ago

There is a need to outline current knowledge about the likelihood of extreme climate change, discuss why understanding bad-to-worst cases is vital, articulate reasons for concern about catastrophic outcomes, define key terms, and put forward a research agenda.

August 10, 2022

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