Is the Paris Climate Agreement a Good Strategy?
Dec 22, Paris: This week, 195 nations came together in Paris and adopted a global agreement to combat climate change. The accord aims to keep global warming below 2 degree Celsius, with nations pledging to gradually reduce greenhouse gas emissions, among other goals. Wealthier nations pledged to provide financial and economic support to developing countries and those most affected by global warming to help them meet the climate goals and mitigate the damaging effects of climate change.
The agreement has been hailed as "the most important piece of international diplomacy in years" and "a big, big deal." President Barack Obama lauded the accord as offering "the best change to save the one planet we have." And former Vice President Al Gore said the agreement "gives us an excellent chance of accelerating the measures that could actually bring us to a point where we can start stabilizing the climate."
On the other hand, some climate experts say it doesn't go far enough. Former NASA scientist James Hansen said the accord is "a fraud," and former Bolivian climate negotiator Pablo Solon called the agreement "a death sentence for many people," adding, "A world with temperature increases more than 3 degrees Celsius is a world where not everyone will survive."
Some conservative pundits have similarly attacked the agreement as meaningless. Writing in The Washington Post, George Will said it's "false" to label the Paris agreement as a "turning point" for the climate. While it "probably occasions slight excitement among the planet's billion people who lack electricity, and the hundreds of millions in need of potable water," he wrote, the deal is "primarily aspirational" and dismisses the centuries of human progress built upon harnessing coal energy. Breitbart's James Delingpole, meanwhile, argued that because the deal is "non-binding, carries no penalties and is entirely voluntary," it means "nothing."
The Oslo Times