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Almost nine out of 10 climate scientists do not believe political efforts to restrict global
warming to 2C will succeed, a Guardian poll reveals today. An average rise of 4-5C by
the end of this century is more likely, they say, given soaring carbon emissions and
Some of those surveyed who said the 2C target would be met confessed they did so
more out of hope rather than belief. "As a mother of young children I choose to believe
this, and work hard toward it," one said.
"This optimism is not primarily due to scientific facts, but to hope," said another. Some
said they thought geoengineering measures, such as seeding the ocean with iron to
encourage plankton growth, would help meet the target.
Many of the experts stressed that an inability to hit the 2C target did not mean that
efforts to tackle global warming should be abandoned, but that the emphasis is now on