The Hong Kong Observatory is pleased to learn the award of this year's Nobel Peace Prize to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). IPCC provides world leaders and decision makers with the most authoritative scientific evidence on climate change.
IPCC was established jointly by the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations Environmental Programme in 1988. It is one of co-winners of the Nobel Peace Prize 2007, the other co-winner being Mr Al Gore.
For years, the Observatory has been contributing to the work of IPCC. The Director of the Hong Kong Observatory, Mr C Y Lam, was both a contributing author and an expert reviewer of the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) prepared by Working Group I and released earlier this year. This Working Group focused on the physical science basis of climate change. AR4 also made reference to a research paper by Observatory staff on how landfalling tropical cyclones were affected by El Nino Southern Oscillation.
In May this year, Co-Chairs of all the three IPCC Working Groups were in Hong Kong to discuss the latest findings of IPCC in the International Conference on Climate Change organized by the engineering community [http://www.hkie.org.hk/ICCC2007/pp.htm]. Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, Chairman of IPCC, spoke to the conference via a video presentation. In support of the conference, Mr C Y Lam was a member of the conference's Organizing Committee, while Mr K H Yeung, Assistant Director, served in the Technical Committee.
Recognizing the importance of climate change and the impact of human activities on the earth's climate, the Observatory has for a long time been studying climate change and intensified its climate change studies since the early 2000s. A number of technical reports and research papers on the subject were published. The Observatory also invested efforts in promoting public understanding and awareness of the phenomenon. Press conferences were conducted at regular intervals to promulgate the latest findings on climate change and its effects on Hong Kong to the public.
Most recently, an educational package on climate change [http://www.weather.gov.hk/climate_change/ed_package/start.htm] was produced and distributed to schools in Hong Kong. Among other educational material, the package for secondary-school children featured the award-winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" by Mr Al Gore, the co-winner of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.
Looking ahead, the Observatory has a team of professional meteorologists conversant on the subject of climate change and ready to give speeches and lectures to a wider audience on the scientific basis and impact of climate change. Interested schools or parties please write to Dr K K Yeung, Senior Scientific Officer, Hong Kong Observatory, 134A, Nathan Road, Hong Kong.