For the first time, loss and damage now resides within the international climate agreement as a standalone concept. It springs from the reality that there are some climate change impacts that cannot be adapted to—impacts that are so severe that they leave in their wake permanent or significantly damaging effects.
international climate policy
The new Paris Agreement places unprecedented importance on actions needed to help people adapt to a warmer world, and solidifies expectations that all countries will do their part to promote greater climate resilience.
Negotiators made major and encouraging promises when they adopted the new Paris Agreement at COP21 last week. Yet the future success of this Agreement relies on tough questions about accountability, participation, transparency and effectiveness—all of which have governance challenges at their core.
One of the new Agreement's core ingredients is known as the ambition mechanism, or cycles of action. This mechanism lays out a process to continue strengthening countries' climate action every five years, starting before 2020.
The Agreement adopted at COP21 in Paris takes the world further than it has ever gone before on climate policy. WRI Climate Director Jennifer Morgan explains.
PARIS (December 12, 2015)— Today in Paris, nearly 200 UN delegates united around a global agreement to address climate change, the Paris Agreement. The agreement will bring all countries together into a common framework to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.
Following are statements by Andrew Steer and Jennifer Morgan.
Dr. Andrew Steer, President & CEO, World Resources Institute, said:
"Under President Obama, the United States has sent a clear message at home and abroad that it's serious about climate action," write WRI Board member and former Governor of New Mexico Bill Richardson. "We've vastly increased fuel efficiency standards for vehicles, set standards to limit carbon pollution under the Clean Power Plan, and brought China and other countries together around firm international commitments for action."
If successful, the new international climate agreement forged in Paris will send strong signals to financial markets—and therefore to businesses and investors—about the direction of energy for the foreseeable future.
Even before the new international climate agreement is finalized, COP21 has accomplished a lot when it comes to cities, clean energy, business and more.
While negotiators huddle at COP21 in Paris, the Global Carbon Project just released its latest assessment of carbon dioxide emissions trends through 2014, showing where emissions are now and where they are headed. Learn about four of the report's key findings.