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Even Tatooine feels the heat from climate change

The inaugural report from the Tatooine Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change presents unique climate challenges ahead for Sarlaacs, Hutts, and moisture farmers.

Those two suns are really heating up Tatooine. 20th Century Fox

The hot, dry, dessert-like planet of Tatooine is getting hotter and drier, according to the inaugural and completely kind-of fictional report from the Tatooine Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The report (PDF) measured climate trends over the past 110 Galactic Standard Years and shows that the average surface temperature of Luke Skywalker's home world has been on the rise, with each decade hotter than the last. Perhaps more important is that in the last three decades, temperatures have risen at accelerated rates, suggesting that Tatooine's unregulated water-mining industry is taking its toll on the environment.

The fictional report, created by David Ng, a molecular biologist from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, was only slightly adapted from the very real report from Planet Earth's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Ng is using his report on Tatooine to make his students a bit more interested in reading the IPCC report, which Ng told Wired is extremely important but incredibly boring to read. "Why not throw in a 'Star Wars' angle to capture a few more eyeballs?" Ng said.

A reading of the Tatooine report suggests that climate change on the planet will have a devastating impact on local wildlife, as some creatures would need to relocate to survive. The mighty saarlac creatures, perhaps most famous for eating Boba Fett (who later escaped), would likely be the first creature facing extinction since the pit-dwellers couldn't exactly migrate along with their prey.

Ng's assumptions about the Tatooine report being more compelling than its counterpart are pretty spot on, as it's much, much more interesting than its Earthly equivalent, which for most people would require a lengthy stay at the Mos Eisley Cantina and a few intergalactic drinks to power through.

David Ng