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Monday, July 6, 2009

The Latest from Oxfam

Today, Oxfam released its latest report, Suffering the Science: Climate Change, People, and Poverty. While it is full of rhetoric and references to suggest its conclusions are based on sound science, the report is also full of rhetoric reflecting the advocacy nature of the organisation - e.g., much ado about observed climate extremes as an indicator of climate change impacts. Nevertheless, some folks are into that kind of thing.

From the Summary:

Climate change is a reality and its effects are apparent right now. The scientific predictions are shifting continually – they almost always look bleaker. But Oxfam’s experience in nearly 100 countries is definitive: hundreds of millions of people are already suffering damage from a rapidly changing climate, which is frustrating their efforts to escape poverty. This paper is the story of the ‘affected’.

To tell this story we have brought together the voices of two communities – scientists who study the impact of climate change, and the people who are suffering harm now. In March 2009, 2,500 leading scientists gathered in Copenhagen to present updated research across the entire spectrum of climate change. This paper is based on their work, and as much as possible upon the latest science, set alongside the first-hand stories that emerge from Oxfam’s work with poor people.

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