One thing is certain: this agreement will not be enough to limit the average temperature of global warming to 2 degrees Celsius, let alone the 1.5 degrees Celsius temperature that the agreement itself considers necessary. However, for domestic policy reasons in most countries and in the current geopolitical reality, this is the best deal we have been able to reach. That is why we cannot place all our hope in such an international agreement and action must be taken at all levels at which we are all involved. Trump`s announcement of the Paris climate accord looks a bit like a little bit of a past. The first time the United States refused to sign an international climate treaty was when President George W. Bush announced his intention to withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol in 2001. This document provides an overview of the key elements of the Paris climate agreement and provides an assessment of its main strengths and weaknesses. The document concludes with a reflection on what is needed for its effective implementation. In this blog post, we give an overview of the agreement, including what it contains, what motivated Donald Trump`s decision and how it nevertheless inspired a strong show of support. I think the current non-binding climate agreement is ineffective, but the previous approach was also not realistic. Compelling reduction targets lead to a fierce struggle between different countries, such as the current large emitters and the poorest developing countries. No one wants to go home and lose negotiations and no one wants to lose national prosperity.
While the agreement is a good place to start, it is not a complete solution. According to the scientists who analyzed the agreement, each country, even if it complies with the agreement, will reduce only half the carbon emissions needed to prevent global temperatures from exceeding 2 degrees Celsius, writes Coral Davenport for the New York Times. And while signatory states have a legal obligation to meet every five years to report on their progress, it is up to each country to set its own emission reduction targets. While the final agreement calls for a $100 billion fund to help developing countries, it is not legally binding, Davenport writes. www.wri.org/faqs-about-how-paris-agreement-enters-force The climate agreement has set an aggressive target of limiting atmospheric temperatures by more than 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit). This is slightly less than the previous target set by several countries of 2 degrees Celsius (about 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), which is considered a turning point for irreversible and devastating consequences such as sea level rise, drought and famine. The new agreement also gives nations some time to act. Starting in 2018, delegates will meet again to share their progress, with the hope of developing even more ambitious plans by 2020, reports Craig Welch for National Geographic. It is quite impressive that 195 countries have agreed on a single treaty, but not all signatures have been given without murmurs. President Barack Obama, who called the agreement a “turning point” in the fight against climate change, even acknowledged that it was not a perfect plan. The same view was heard by the leaders of countries such as China and India, who fought for more financial aid to developing countries, the BBC reports.
Like the Cold War, managing climate change requires an equally sustainable multi-party coalition. Therefore, if mitigation plans are not good enough, is there a good mechanism to increase these plans in the near future and regularly, in order to be as precise as possible with the necessary efforts? Not really, and one of the biggest risks of this agreement is that we assume it exists.