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Climate challenge: reaching a global accord

Switzerland is one of more than 190 countries that agreed to a landmark climate treaty in Paris in December 2015 at the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21). The agreement, which replaces the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, will come into effect in 2020. It mentions the peaking of “global average temperature to well below two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels”, and pursuing efforts to limit that to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

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Swiss developments

Heatwaves Swiss glaciers shrink by 10% in five years

Glacier melt rates reached record levels during the summer heatwaves of 2019. This led to another year of major losses of ice volume.

This content was published on October 15, 2019 10:41 AM

SERIES ON SWISS GLACIERS: 2,000 – 3,000 METRES As glaciers shrink, are the Alps more dangerous?

Melting of the glaciers means more risk of landslides and flooding. Yet it is also opening up new opportunities for Alpine tourism. 

Climate strikes Switzerland’s Greta is called Marie-Claire

Student Marie-Claire Graf initiated climate strikes in Switzerland and took part in the first youth climate summit in New York.

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A contentious political issue

COP24 Climate talks open amid post-Paris polemics

Three years after sealing a landmark global climate deal in Paris, world leaders are gathering again in Poland to agree on the fine print.

4-6 degrees Celsius Swiss National Bank must rethink emissions-heavy investments

Climate Alliance Switzerland has called for a “stress test” of the Swiss financial system and given recommendations for protecting it and the climate.

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Crunching the numbers

Energy Melting glaciers have little impact on Swiss hydropower

Although rapidly melting glaciers provide a temporary boost to Swiss hydropower production, their disappearance does not pose a threat.

This content was published on September 6, 2018 3:31 PM

Biodiversity Alpine flowers fight for food and space

Global warming is affecting the range of alpine flora – creating winners and losers, says a joint study from Swiss and Austrian scientists.

Emissions monitoring Can Swiss data help catch climate cheaters?

Scientists monitoring emissions from an Alpine station want international monitors to use their data, since other reporting could be flawed.

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Aletsch’s changing environment What’s happening to Europe’s longest glacier?

The mighty Aletsch Glacier is melting at an ever-quickening pace and could almost disappear by the end of this century. The shrinking field of ice ...

World Rivers Day Snapshots of a changing alpine climate

What does global warming look like? Geography student and photographer Merlin Unterfinger has followed river courses of the Swiss Alps to document ...

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