Luckily we created a video answering that very question.
So… Climate Change = Long Term Weather. However, a deal to stop Climate Change shouldn’t = Long Term Plan.
This December the world’s politicians are going to sort it all out. Or so they say. COP21 or the 2015 Paris Climate Conference is the annual meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change that 193 countries in the world are signed up to. Their aim is to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate change, locking in the target of keeping global warming below 2°C.
If the Earth heats above 2°C it’s generally agreed that we’ll see serious side effects. Think natural disasters like floods and freak weather events. If we keep burning fossil fuels at the rate we currently are we could hit this level by around 2036. No pressure then.
Countries attending the Paris climate conference were asked for plans outlining the amount of carbon they will reduce. These are called “Intended Nationally Determined Contributions”. Yeah, no offence, but I prefer “No Carbs before 2020”.
At the moment these are only promises and at COP21 politicians will attempt to turn these into a binding agreement. Good plan, guys.
It’s an ambitious target and yes, we have been here before. A deal was expected to be signed in Copenhagen in 2009… but fell through.
Even worse news; research is suggesting that even if a deal is struck at the Paris Climate Conference, the pledges from the countries involved may not be enough to slow global warming down. So how will the Paris Climate Conference make sure countries keep their word? There has been talk of creating a “ratcheting” system which would allow the UN to monitor the progress of each country. This would allow more pressure to be put on countries which aren’t pulling their weight. Come on guys, crank it up a notch!
Climate Action Supporter; “the science is there and 97% of scientists agree, the world is heating up. We may already be too late to stop it, but have to act now.”
Climate Change Denier; “How do we know that the planet warming up is down to humans? Surely there are other natural causes? We don’t know that the predicted results of ‘Climate Change’ would be a bad thing.”
Strange as it may seem, there are a small number of people who say that Climate Change has nothing to do with humans. However, a lot of people who are undecided about Climate Action are:
On the fence; “I think we need Climate Action… but isn’t it really expensive?”
Lots of developed countries are playing hard to get as they think Climate Action will have a negative effect on their wallets. For example China is keen to tackle Climate Change in the long run, but want a few more years of economic growth thanks to fossil fuels.
Paris may be the city of romance, but some are hoping mankind’s love affair with fossil fuels ends here. Will the Paris Climate Conference lead to a proper international agreement to stop Climate Change?
David Saddington is a climate change communicator, social entrepreneur, Huff Post blogger and TEDx speaker who has studied the science & policy behind the climate topics and is actively engaged in tackling the problem. You can follow him @