For the first time in the history of the international Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a South African has been elected to a co-chair position within the Bureau.
Head of the City’s Environmental Planning and Climate Protection Unit, Dr Debra Roberts, and her co-chair, Prof. Hans‐Otto Pörtner of Germany, will lead discussions of the Working Group II report which assesses the impacts, vulnerability and adaptation options of climate change for the Sixth Assessment report of the IPCC.
The IPCC is the leading international body for the assessment of the environmental and socio-economic impacts of climate change. The election took place during the 42nd session of IPCC and IPCC Bureau held from 5 to 8 October 2015 in Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Dr Roberts’s election brings a strong African representation to the global body. As a vulnerable continent, her involvement is critical to finding real, workable solutions as climate change adaptation is a critical concern for Africa. As an African scientist, Dr Roberts will bring a thorough understanding, knowledge and expertise of the problems and possible range of responses to climate change.
Dr Roberts is world-renowned for her achievements in the environmental and climate change arenas, winning numerous international awards and recognition for her efforts. She sits on various global bodies that focuses on advancing climate change and biodiversity issues in cities, and is the author of numerous research papers. Through her work, she has ensured that local action in Durban, a typical African city, has begun to influence the international urban climate change adaption and biodiversity debates in a meaningful way. EThekwini Municipality is proud of her achievements and congratulates her on her success.