Are you ready to learn the truth about the state of our planet?

Climate change is real and human activities are the main cause. The concentration of greenhouse gases in the earth’s atmosphere is directly linked to the average global temperature on Earth. The concentration has been rising steadily, and mean global temperatures along with it, since the time of the Industrial Revolution. Global CO2 emissions from fossil fuels hit record high in 2023. Not surprisingly, 2023 is the hottest year on record, with global temperatures close to the 1.5°C limit.

Global warming limits to 1.5°C are significant because they would help reduce the risks of devastating consequences, such as extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and biodiversity loss. To prevent warming beyond 1.5°C, we need to reduce emissions by 8% every year from this year to 2030. Why are we not moving faster? Why are we not listening to the dire warnings by top climate researchers?

In this session we will meet one of them. Being a brilliant and inspiring storyteller Professor Benjamin Horton will tell us the truth we need to hear. It is not pretty but it is important. And it will affect life as we know it.


  • Professor Benjamin Horton is Director of the Earth Observatory of Singapore and a Professor in Earth Science at the Asian School of the Environment in Nanyang Technological University (NTU).
  • Ylva Strander, Head of Department, Systems transformation and Policy, Vinnova, who will moderate this Side Event

Professor Horton actively contributed to the COP26 conference: he led the COP26 report on managing disaster risks from natural hazards in ASEAN. He was also appointed Mentor for the Commonwealth Futures Climate Research Cohort to guide a group of researchers working towards solutions for climate-vulnerable communities in the lead-up to COP26. He is a Review Editor for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment Report and was an author of the 5th Assessment Report. Professor Horton’s research was cited by President Obama in his 2015 State of the Union Address at the United States Capitol on January 20th 2015.

Professor Horton’s research concerns sea-level change, with the aim of understanding and integrating the external and internal mechanisms that have determined sea-level changes in the past, and which will shape such changes in the future. His research impacts upon important ecological, ethical, social, economic and political problems specifically facing coastal regions.