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G20 Climate Risk Atlas: a preview of future scenarios

In the worst-case scenario, if G20 governments fail to take urgent action to reduce climate-changing emissions, GDP losses caused by climate change in G20 countries could reach 4% per year by 2050, and exceed 8% by 2100. That is, climate-related GDP losses could double the losses caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Some of these countries face even worse losses, such as Canada, which could see its GDP reduced by at least 4% by 2050 and by more than 13% —  €133 billion — by 2100.

Conversely, by limiting the increase in global temperature to within 2°C compared to the pre-industrial period, the loss could fall to 0.1% of total GDP by 2050 and to 1.3% by 2100.

The data emerges from the first atlas of G20 countries that provides climate scenarios, information, data and expected changes in climate and related impact. This tool, which uses science to shed light on the risks of the world's largest economies, is designed to support decision-making towards effective and scientifically-informed climate action.

The CMCC Foundation has published the G20 Climate Risk Atlas — 20 Country Fact Sheets with maps and infographics that offer a complete picture of the most up-to-date scientific knowledge on climate, associated risks and impacts on economies, the environment and societies. The report was produced with the support of the European Climate Foundation and with the scientific contribution of Enel Foundation.

The atlas summarises the scientific knowledge of the impacts that climate change is forecasted to make in the coming decades in the most industrialised countries of the world. The information comes from modelling, data analysis, and the use of indicators and surveys of the latest scientific literature, including peer-reviewed articles, technical reports and open-access material from European Horizon 2020 projects.

The report includes the results of the research conducted at Ca’ Foscari and at the Cmcc@ Ca’Foscari centre. The authors of the report are Ca’ Foscari professors Francesco Bosello and Enrica De Cian, PhD students in Science and Management of Climate Change Francesco Pietro Colelli and Remi Harris, and the researchers of Cmcc@Ca’Foscari Margaretha Breil, Shouro Dasgupta, Katie Johnson, Jaroslav Mysiak, and Silvia Torresan.

Country cards with infographics and maps

The Atlas is easy to browse and includes a variety of infographics, maps and short descriptions in accessible language. Through an in-depth analysis of the key sectors of the G20 economies, the research assesses the impacts, risks and interactions with climate change predicted for the middle and end of the century for each country, considering different warming scenarios and different patterns of development.

The G20 Climate Risk Atlas presents information on the impacts of climate change for each G20 country according to 11 sectors: Climate, Ocean, Coasts, Water, Agriculture, Forests and Fires, Cities, Health, Energy, Economic and Political Impacts.

Possible impacts

From coastal erosion to the spread of tropical diseases, every G20 country is at risk from the impacts of climate change. Research shows that rising temperatures and intense heat waves could cause severe droughts, threatening water supplies that are essential to agriculture, leading to loss of life and increasing the chance of fires.

By 2050, heat waves could last at least ten times longer in all countries in the group of 20, and over 60 times longer in the case of Argentina, Brazil and Indonesia. In Europe, in a high-emission scenario, deaths related to extreme heat events could increase from 2,700 per year to 90,000 per year by 2100.

Climate change will also affect food security: in India, the decline in rice and wheat production could result in economic losses of up to € 81 billion by 2050 and a 15% loss of farmers' income by 2100. By 2050, fishing in Indonesia could decrease by a fifth, undermining the livelihoods of part of the population.

In a high-carbon path, rising sea levels could damage coastal infrastructure over the next 30 years, resulting in losses of € 404 billion in Japan and € 815 million in South Africa.

In Australia, bushfires, coastal floods and hurricanes could increase insurance costs and reduce property values ​​by AU $ 611 billion by 2050.

Read the report here:

Author: Enrico Costa / Translator: Joangela Ceccon