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A Kiwi scientist's haiku version of the latest global warming report

Kiwi scientist Dr Andy Reisinger has tried to distil the extreme wordiness of the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change into just 19 haiku.

The 560-page report, published in October, looks at the advantages of trying to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

It has run into a roadblock at climate talks under way in Poland. Saudi Arabia, the US, Russia and Kuwait objected to the conference "welcoming" the document.

No compromise wording could be agreed, so under UN rules, with no consensus, the passage of text had to be dropped.

Reisinger's first haiku sounds almost like a plea to the squabbling world leaders:

We wrote this report
at your request, and with care.
Will you listen please?

But Reisinger - deputy director of the New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre - said the haiku just showed "an unpleasant amount of foresight".

"I did that series of haiku initially just after the report was completed, just as a way to communicate the key messages," he said. "It wasn't motivated at all by what is happening in Poland."

It was also in line with a tradition made popular in New Zealand by think tank Motu, which had a viewpoint that all reports should be able to be summarised as haiku.

The fact countries weren't able to even agree whether or not to welcome a scientific report was just an indication things weren't going well in terms of global action on climate change, Reisinger said.

"This isn't easy, that's the really important message."

The IPCC Global Warming of 1.5C special report in haiku, by Andy Reisinger:

We wrote this report
at your request, and with care.
Will you listen please?

We're at 1 degree
now and will hit 1.5
within three decades.

Past emissions will
warm the Earth for centuries -
but there's still a choice.

Climate risk increase
with every half degree.
Some are real now.

More warming, higher
seas. Maybe much higher. Could
wake sleeping giants.

Warming is bad news
for many species. Once gone,
we can't bring them back.

People are affected
by all this; some will struggle
much more than others.

1.5 degrees
needs global carbon-zero
by 2050.

All emission paths
to 1.5 degrees cut
methane hard and fast.

Carbon budgets are
uncertain but either way
quickly depleted.

Reduced emissions
won't be enough. Put carbon
back where it belongs.

Feed more people and
remove carbon at large scale -
in models yes, but...?

Current NDCs
across countries won't achieve
what we agreed to.

Rapid reductions
demand unprecedented
transformations now.

1.5 degrees
needs higher carbon prices
to make it happen.

Policies can drive
investment, innovation,
and behaviour change.

There are so many
synergies with SDGs:
Use them or lose them.

Adapt, mitigate
and develop: with great care
we could have it all.

Good development
helps climate, and good climate
helps development.

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