2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21)
France chaired and hosted the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21/CMP11), from 30 November to 11 December 2015. The conference is crucial because the outcome is a new international agreement on climate change, applicable to all, to keep global warming below 2°C.
The international political response to climate change began at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, where the ‘Rio Convention’ included the adoption of the UN Framework on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This convention set out a framework for action aimed at stabilising atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs) to avoid “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” The UNFCCC which entered into force on 21 March 1994, now has a near-universal membership of 195 parties.
The main objective of the annual Conference of Parties (COP) is to review the Convention’s implementation. The first COP took place in Berlin in 1995 and significant meetings since then have included COP3 where the Kyoto Protocol was adopted, COP11 where the Montreal Action Plan was produced, COP15 in Copenhagen where an agreement to success Kyoto Protocol was unfortunately not realised and COP17 in Durban where the Green Climate Fund was created.
In 2015 COP21, also known as the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, will, for the first time in over 20 years of UN negotiations, aim to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C.
France will play a leading international role in hosting this seminal conference, and COP21 will be one of the largest international conferences ever held in the country. The conference is expected to attract close to 50,000 participants including 25,000 official delegates from government, intergovernmental organisations, UN agencies, NGOs and civil society.
Official webpage - many further sources:
Multimedia to watch:
World leaders on COP21
QUESTIONS TO ANSWER (online international discussion):
- Is the climate change really the most important global issue? Which other could be more important?
- Decide on 3 most important actions to tackle climate change.
- What do you think about the ecoterrorism? Is it a legitimate way how citizens defend their environment against destruction caused by states (e.g. building s coal power plant or dangerous indusrtry in your neighborhood)?
- Can individuals (you) help to stop climate change? (or only states and big companies?)
Discuss first in your club. Use this FORUM to discuss with members of other clubs.