COP21 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is getting underway at Le Bourget conference centre just outside Paris. It will be a huge gathering of world leaders and delegates from all around the world. The meeting runs from 30 November to 11 December.
UPDATE: I've just seen that the final
COP meetings aren't scientific meetings, they are about action to mitigate climate change through intergovernmental agreement. The aim of COP21 has been described as "to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C". The "legally binding" is probably not going to be achieved, because the agreement has to be accepted by all parties and there are some who won't be able to accept the legally binding part. The agreement won't be sufficient to guarantee "below 2°C", but will be an important pre-requisite.
To keep up to date with drafts etc, here is a link to the main UNFCCC COP21 website and the provisional agenda and overview schedule. There is also an information hub, and live webcasts (I don't know if they will be open to a general audience or not).
Background and commentary
Below are links to some of what is being written about it. It's not exhaustive by any means. I mainly picked articles that provide information about what COP21 is about and what is to be achieved, hopefully.
- The Conversation has a big spread with lots of articles focusing on different aspects.
- From the UK Independent: Paris climate change talks: What the different groups attending expect from these crucial meetings
- Biwa Kwan at SBS (Australia) provides an overview: Paris Climate Meeting: What you need to know about COP21
- Climate scientist Simon Donner writes about the Seven Key Issues To Be Addressed At The Paris Climate Summit
- Matt McGrath of the BBC - COP21: Beginner's guide to the UN Paris climate summit
- The Guardian has a feature spread with lots of articles
- Australia's ABC is notable for it's lack of focus on COP21 apart from a couple of articles in the Drum opinion section and news items about marches and arrests - maybe there is more to come
- Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General - What I expect from the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris
- Brandon Miller, CNN - 5 things you need to know about COP21