SMC BRIEFING: Climate impacts and action — The next IPCC releases

What risks from climate change will New Zealand need to confront? What areas are most vulnerable, and what actions will be required? What options are still on the table for limiting greenhouse gas emissions? 

The next sections of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)’s latest report (AR5) — the most comprehensive and up-to-date assessment of the world’s vulnerabilities from climate change and options for reducing impacts — are due out in March and April this year.

The reports will focus on risks and impact of climate change on a regional as well as global scale, including specific impacts in New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific (WGII); and options for limiting greenhouse gas emissions (WGIII).

The Science Media Centre hosted an in-person and online background briefing for journalists with leading New Zealand co-authors of the forthcoming IPCC WGII and III reports. Although the speakers couldn’t comment on the specific content of the upcoming reports, they were able to discuss the process and some of the research that on which their assessments were based.



  • Dr David Wratt, Director, NZ Climate Change Centre (NIWA)
  • Dr Andy Reisinger, Deputy Director, NZ Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre
  • Prof Ralph Sims, Director, Centre for Energy Research (Massey)

Also present and available for Q&A were:

  • Dr Andrew Tait, Principal Scientist – Climate (NIWA)
  • Dr Adam Jaffe, Director, Motu Economic and Public Policy Research