After two weeks of negations from members of the United Nations, there is finally an end to the long wait on what the decision to universally fight climate change will be. An agreement has been set in place amongst member nations; five key points to take away from the 31 page document are as follows:
1. Limit the global temperature rise to well below 2C.
A well accepted fact is that the earth will suffer irreversible damage and significant natural disasters if the temperature rises above 2C on average from pre-industrial times. Nations now agree that we collectively must stay well below the 2C mark.
2. This is the first climate agreement that is legally binding.
Unlike past accords, the Paris Agreement is legally binding for every country entered in the UN. This has been hailed as the greatest diplomatic success in history.
3. Developing nations will be given $100 billion by 2020 from developed nations.
The money will be used for clean energy infrastructure. The ROI for developing nations is ten-fold higher than in developed nations so this contribution will be of great use. Regions of the world with limited to no energy access will get their power from clean energy sources.
4. Greenhouse gas reduction and targets will be published and publicly available.
A key point from this conference was transparency from all nations and sharing their moves with the world.
5. The world will aim to become carbon neutral between 2050-2100.
It is good to see that the leaders of the world all agree that carbon neutrality will be the best for the health and safety of our earth. With the price of clean technologies steadily decreasing and the next generation being educated on how to treat the earth better, we may be able to see a carbon neutral world in our lifetime.
The entire document for the Paris Agreement can be found here: http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2015/cop21/eng/l09.pdf