Monday, November 30, 2015

COP21 begins in Paris - links to get you up to speed

Sou | 9:08 AM Go to the first of 7 comments. Add a comment
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 text draft has been agreed prepared. I'll let you know as soon as it's available - or you can keep an eye on the UN website. There's a press conference scheduled for 11:30 am CET today - Saturday (Europe time).
Sou 2:30 pm AEDT 12 December 2015

The purpose

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.

The meeting

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.

UNFCCC Pledges, websites and reports

There is a special UNFCCC website, which has a the report "Climate Action Now", plus the pledges from each country. It's one of those highly irritating fancy websites designed for touch tablets, where you have to guess a lot, click a lot, scroll a lot, and get mini-bits of information in return - but it mightn't be the information you are looking for. I recommend this link for the Climate Action Now Summary for Policymakers report - although if you're on a notebook or desktop computer, you'll find the website almost as irritating. There's also a web page with a press release, which is easier to read.

It would be great if you can add other interesting links in the comments below.


  1. The web broadcast is working. The meeting is opening now:


    1. And the live feed is indeed public. Many thanks for the link !

  2. webcast was also shown in finland, now on a break, I guess: http://areena.yle.fi/tv/suorat/yle-areena/1-3176147

  3. Just read that China released its 900-page Third National Climate Change Assessment Report” which the NY Times says is "the work of some 550 scientists and experts, summing up the advancing knowledge of the environmental consequences of rising greenhouse gas levels.”

    I wonder how Team Denial are going to spin 550 Chinese scientists plus the Chinese government signing up for "the conspiracy”.

  4. I've contacted the ABC to ask why they are not covering COP21. I'm dismayed that Australians are not getting any live updates of this event. It's not even rated a mention on the front page of ABC News. (I figure that Julie Bishop has sent her death stare to the Editor.)

    1. They're a craven bunch, have had their board stacked with reactionary activists by the last 2 LNP governments, are the whipping boys of the Murdoch Empire, and they (rightly) fear for their funding. And / or, mix and match explanations to your heart's content.

      At any rate, future generations will not be kind in their assessment of the performance of the national broadcaster, the LNP, and the Murdochracy.

      The Graun, however, is doing the job that the ABC should have been doing. In fact, the Graun and the SMH/Fairfax have now largely taken over the role of the fearless watchdogs on the public interest more generally. The LNP's role in gutting the ABC is a national disgrace.

  5. I don't think anything will come out of COP21
    It'll be like Copenhagen all over again


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