Paris UN Climate Conference Blog

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FAWCO Environment Task Force Co-Chairs Anne van Oorschot and Kara Fairchild will be blogging about the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to be held in Paris from November 30 to December 11, 2015. Here's a message from the Co-Chairs:

The UN Climate Conference in Paris is of historic importance! While no one from the Environment Task Force is able to attend the Conference, the Task Force will be reporting on what goes on in Paris. In addition to some general background information on the Conference (and definitions of the UN’s Alphabet soup of abbreviations), we will post summaries of what has taken place to date. Please check back often and stay informed on this important climate meeting!

We’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic as well!
Anne & Kara


Climate Change Deal Reached - Key Elements

With the bang of a gavel Saturday night, representatives of 195 nations reached a landmark accord that will, for the first time, commit nearly every country to lowering planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions to help avert the most drastic effects of climate change. The deal represents a historic breakthrough on an issue that has foiled decades of international efforts to address climate change. In the past, such pacts have required developed economies like the United States to take action to lower greenhouse gas emissions, but they have exempted developing countries like China and India from such obligations. The Paris accord, which…

Gender Day at the Paris Climate Conference

December 8th was the UNFCC declared Gender Day at the UN Convention on Climate Change in Paris.  Climate change disproportionately affects women, as the poor are most hit by climate change issues such as flooding, droughts and crop failure.  Women make up 70% of the world’s poorest, located in rural areas where they are responsible for securing food and water, as well as energy for heating and cooking. 

The UNFCC highlights programs throughout the world which are contributing to climate action.  Of this year’s 16 winners, 4 were recognized on gender day for their support or leadership by women:…

Ambitious Climate Pact Seems Remote (+ Leonardo Di Caprio)

France was wise to organize the attendance of world leaders at the beginning of the Climate Conference. At the climate top 6 years ago in Copenhagen, the leaders came at the very end. In anticipation of their arrival, the negotiators seemed frozen, hardly daring to make any agreements, with insufficient time left to make a serious deal afterwards. World leaders in Paris opened the Conference with bold and urgent words about the climate. Unfortunately, the political momentum created by those speeches seems to have barely found its way to the negotiating tables. Old reflexes, mainly between rich and poor countries,…

Visit the Paris Climate Conference

For FAWCO members living in or near Paris, or visiting during the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, you can participate in the debate on solutions to climate change.  The Climate Generations Areas (CGA) inaugural opening was December 1st and will be open to the public, free of charge, from the 1st through the 11th of December (except Sunday, December 6th) from 10.30 a.m. to 7.00 p.m.  The CGA is located next to the UN Conference Center at Le Bourget. 

The purpose of the CGA is to promote debate on solutions to climate change at both the local and global…

Polluting is Still Very Cheap

The polluter pays. That is the principle that was agreed upon 20 years ago at the Environment Conference in Rio de Janeiro as the basis of the International Environmental policy. At the Climate Conference in Paris, this is again an important topic. How do you make sure that those who pollute the atmosphere with greenhouse gases pay the costs of the climate change that results? And preferably, pay so much that the climate change caused by those emissions grinds to a halt.

In reality, the polluter very often doesn’t have to pay at all.The result is that the pollution…

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