A new year calls for greater change.
Photograph: Yann Caradec
A shining beacon of hope is displayed at the climax of the COP21 conference in Paris, as a global agreement amongst world leaders is reached. An article by the BBC, 2015 saw President Obama say that the climate deal reached in Paris is “the best chance we have to save the one planet we have”. After a week of negotiations between 195 governments, the final draft was published with one of the main goals to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, with another being a controversial promise that developed nations should provide $100 billion to help poorer nations deal with the consequences of climate change (Business Insider, 2015).
The talks are significant in the step towards fighting climate change. In the future however, it will be interesting to see if countries abide by the policies and don’t simply promote their own interests. One of the problems with setting global policies is providing an effective and transparent regime, differentiation, and means of implementation (Down to earth, 2015).
Moreover, the agreement has not only addressed the issue of anthropogenic climate change, but has touched on migration induced climate change as a threat to our global well being. The talks introduced several proposals to include a “climate change displacement coordination facility” in the upcoming UNFCCC agreement (Environmental Migration Portal,2015). This offers potential solutions to one of the biggest problems that is currently affecting our present day, as the migrants themselves are one of the most vulnerable people to climatic changes.
Undoubtedly, COP21 has instilled an aspirational spirit and sense of community amongst global leaders and smaller nations now united in one common cause. Recognition of a 1.5°C limit will act as a suitable benchmark for all countries to strive towards, and in the long run allow the effects of climate change and other environmental issues to be mitigated.
BBC News, (2016). COP21: Paris climate deal is ‘best chance to save planet’ – BBC News. [online] Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-35086346 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2016].
Dutta, A. (2015). Week one in COP21 over, will week two deliver?. [online] Downtoearth.org.in. Available at: http://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/week-one-in-cop21-over-will-week-two-deliver–52004 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2016].
Environmentalmigration.iom.int, (2015). COP21 | Environmental Migration Portal. [online] Available at: https://environmentalmigration.iom.int/tags/cop21 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2016].
Price, R. (2015). The final text of the historic Paris climate change deal has just been released. [online] Business Insider. Available at: http://uk.businessinsider.com/cop21-paris-climate-change-science-deal-agreement-published-response-2015-12 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2016].