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The five worst effects of greenhouse-gas emissions

Avaaz campaigners gather on one side of a giant seesaw to give a visual image of today's IPCC report’s key finding that there is a 95% scientific certainty that humans cause climate change, Sept. 27, 2013 in Stockholm.

Roger Vikstrom/AP Images for Avaaz

A major new report on climate change contains stark warnings about what continued greenhouse-gas emissions will do to the Earth.

Among the findings of the new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change:

  • Temperatures will continue to rise around the world, with a high likelihood of more – and longer – heat waves.
  • Some regions will likely experience more intense, longer droughts.
  • Many areas will have heavier rain, with more parts of the world likely to experience monsoons.
  • Sea levels will keep rising. Oceans will continue to get warmer and they will also become more acidic, threatening some marine life.
  • The Arctic sea ice cover will very likely get both smaller and thinner. Glaciers will continue to shrink and the spring snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere will very likely decrease.

And, if all that isn't bad enough, the report says that even if emissions of carbon dioxide were halted, "most aspects of climate change will persist for many centuries."

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