A Dutch environment ministry spokesman, Trimo Vallaart, asked the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to 'rethink' its assertion that more than half of the Netherlands is below seal level.
Dutch authorities state that only 26 percent of the country is below sea level.
"According to an AFP story, IPCC experts calculated that 55 percent of the Netherlands was below sea level by adding the area below sea level -- 26 percent -- to the area threatened by river flooding -- 29 percent -- Vallaart said. "They should have been clearer," Vallaart pointed out, adding that the Dutch office for environmental planning, an IPCC partner, had the exact figures."
(Why does the IPCC have so much trouble with numbers?)
He noted that correcting the error had been "on the agenda several times" but had never actually happened.
(Why didn't the IPCC correct it?)
Vallaart told the AFP that he regretted the fact that proper procedure was not followed, adding that it should not be left to politicians to check the IPCC's numbers.
No. One would hope that a UN panel whose reports have such an impact on the world would be able to do its math properly.