CORDIO participated in the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21/CMP11), to highlight the stark threat to coral reefs.
We were involved in the following events and stories:
- Climate change and the loss of coral reefs. See CORDIO’s contribution on our blog. An event hosted by Univerity of Queensland’s Global Change Institute and XL Catlin Seaview Survey on 3 December, 3-4:30 PM
- Oceans Day at COP21 Paris – event hosted by the Global Ocean Forum on 4th December, 11-17:00
- The Great Barrier Reef at COP21, Catlin Seaview Survey film launch with Sir David Attenborough, Sir Richard Branson, Sylvia Earle and others, on 5 December at La Maison des Oceans, Paris.
- Don’t forget the oceans at Cop21, say East Africa researchers and activists – an interview on Radio France International’s English service on oceans and climate change.
- Ocean data gap puts Pacific islands in peril – an interview on SciDevNet, on the need for monitoring of oceans (and the same in Pacific Island News).
- promoting the Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Associations call for action to the COP.
The Paris Agreement
A surprise outcome from the COP, to many, was the adoption of the aspirational “Paris Agreement“. It was adopted by all countries, and is to be signed and ratified during 2016. Download the agreement.
The surprise was that the agreement committed countries to maintaining climate change to below the generally agreed “safe” level of 2°C, with further aspiration to limit change to less than 1.5°C. Further, countries agreed to update their targets every 5 years. This common ground was a big surprise given the lack of commitment and agreement shown by countries in prior COPs, in particularly Copenhagen, in 2009.
Nevertheless, critics of the Agreement are many, as it did not include any quantitative or binding targets, leaving implementation up to the goodwill of countries.
See the links below to useful commentary on the Paris Agreement and the way forward.
- Blog post at the MAHB – is there cause for jubilation?
- Guardian newspaper – key points of the Agreement
- Guardian newspaper (Simon Donner) – why we need the 1.5C target
- New York Times – inside the climate deal
- Friends of the Earth – the agreement falls short
- Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) – general comments