Friday 25 June 2010

Call for Proposals for the IPCC Scholarship Programme

As taken from a letter to designated Intergovernmental panel on climate change focal points from the Secretary of the IPCC.

The Call for Proposals for the IPCC Scholarship Programme was announced yesterday on the website (  This Programme has been established with the funds received from the Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the IPCC in 2007. Its purpose is twofold: to develop the knowledge, skills and capacity of young scholars from some of the regions most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and to strengthen the ability of developing countries to contribute to climate science and research.

The Programme will start with a Pilot Phase, managed by the Programme’s Board of Trustees and Science Board, and facilitated by the IPCC Secretariat, with a limited number of scholarship awards for the initial round.

Graduate or doctoral students from developing countries, especially Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States, wishing to pursue academic education and training, undertake advanced research or upgrade skills are welcome to apply for a scholarship before 31 July 2010.

It is expected that the selection process will be completed in the fourth quarter of 2010 and that the selected applicants will commence their studies as soon as possible thereafter.

Please circulate this call for proposals as widely as possible to help it reach prospective students who would most benefit from it, in the spirit of the Nobel Peace Prize.

The IPCC has set up the Scholarship Programme in view of its long experience in assessing risks of human-induced climate change, its broad global network of scientists and research institutions, its experience with producing policy-relevant information and identifying knowledge gaps and research needs, the IPCC is uniquely positioned to govern this Scholarship Programme and I sincerely hope that it will contribute to enhancing the knowledge base in developing countries.

The above is taken from a letter to designated Intergovernmental panel on climate change focal points from the Secretary of the IPCC, please visit ( for more details.

SIDS climate change dilemma: keeping average temperature increase below 1.5°C to stay alive

A feature from the Alliance of Small Islands States, for more details please visit 

As changing climate and rising sea levels negatively affect Small Island Developing States (SIDS), an uncertain future lies ahead for the millions of people who inhabit these island nations. What is certain is the destruction and disappearance of lives, livelihoods, countries,
and the likelihood of large displaced populations if average global temperatures increase by more than 1.5°C. What would industrialized economies do if faced with such a high probability of destruction?

Because SIDS are small countries, we are seldom heard, but we must urgently point out that the global population, primarily the industrialized economies, has already increased the average temperature by 0.8°C above pre-industrial levels. Current atmospheric concentrations of GHG are in excess of 387 parts per million, which scientists believe would raise average global temperature above 1.5°C over time. This current level of GHG is the highest concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in millions of years. The global economy is producing more than twice the GHG that is being sequestered; excess GHG is increasing the acidity of the oceans and increasing average temperatures.

We call upon the industrialized economies and, in particular, the historic polluters to act speedily, appropriately and morally by: 

1. Agreeing to limit average global temperature to less than 1.5°C and send a signal to the global marketplace that the world is serious about clean energy.
2. Signing a legally binding agreement where all countries commit to greening their economy to achieve emission reduction to get to the temperature target.
3. Providing funding and technology to support adaptation to climate change through a dedicated mechanism so we can pursue sustainable development.
4. Supporting establishment of a comprehensive insurance and risk management facility to make sure that socioeconomic gains attained through sacrifice is not destroyed by climate change. 

As emissions increase, changing the global climate, triggering rises in sea levels, changes in rainfall patterns, bleaching of corals, eroding shorelines, and reducing our fisheries, we, the SIDS, would like to know what would you in the industrialized economies do if the situations were reversed? 

Would you want us to be concerned about your future survival and that of your children, or merely consider you as collateral damage in order to maintain a comfortable and fulfilling
lifestyle? Sustainable technological systems that can provide the global population with the same level and significantly more energy services, than what is now provided by high GHG
emitting sources, have been developed but not deployed due to perceived higher costs. For example, the oceans have many times the energy needed by the global population, and it  can be harvested with limited emissions of GHG. How you would feel if you were a citizen of  SIDS, and knew there were low carbon energy alternatives available that can provide the global population with productive and enjoyable lifestyles many times over, without our destruction, but it was considered too much of an economic sacrifice?

For thousands of years, the millions of people living on small island states have generally  been responsible stewards of their environment, due to high dependency on environmental
services for survival and economic development. SIDS have acted as custodians of almost  25 percent of the world’s oceans, a responsibility that is taken very seriously. We have also  played major roles in the evolution of the global maritime and tourism industries, with the  tourism sector accounting for between 45 and 80 percent of gross domestic product in most  SIDS today.

We wish to continue welcoming you to our environment, and we also want to enjoy some of your luxurious lifestyle, a lifestyle that you can still enjoy by pursuing alternative, sustainable energy sources; a lifestyle that can help reduce the unprecedented rate of GHG emissions.

This is a feature from the Alliance of Small Islands States - please visit for more information.