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UN Climate chief: Paris will not be a “miraculous solution”

Small Best C Figueres 09 2015 58

16.9.2015 - The top UN Climate official has warned that a new climate deal at the upcoming Paris climate summit will not limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius.

Speaking at a press conference in Brussels, Ms. Christiana Figueres, the executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) said that promises made by governments on the reduction of CO2 emissions ahead of the December Climate Conference in Paris “do not add up to 2 degrees.”

Paris 2015It is understood that an increase of 2 degree Celsius in global temperatures compared to pre-industrial times, is the most the earth can tolerate without devastating effects.

More than 60 countries, who are responsible for 70% of global CO2 emissions, have handed over their voluntary pledges of reducing emissions ot the UN, the so-called INDCs or  Intended Nationally Determined Contributions.

“It is a fact that the sum total of the INDCs do not add up to 2 degrees Celsius, “ Ms. Figueres told the Press Conference. “I want that to be clear, because I think it is unfair for public opinion to be misled and think that Paris will be a miraculous solution that takes us from where we are now, on the way to 4-5 degrees increase, to be all of a sudden on the way to this miraculous, wonderful, perfect target of 2 degrees. That is not the case.”

Ms. Figueres observed that the climate summit marks the beginning of a long-term process.  She added that, “three degrees is much better than 4 to 5 degrees, but it is still unacceptable.”  However, the Conference and the agreement represent a “substantial departure from what we call business as usual,” Ms. Figueres said.   

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Related Links:

•   UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC): Official Website
•   Paris Climate Summit (COP 21): Official Website
•   Christiana Figueres: Website

Photo Credits:

•   Cover: Christiana Figueres: UN Photo/Michael Durickas
•   Second:  Paris 2015, COP 21

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