post paris paving the way for zero carbon growth

18 Dec 2015 by - Jo Scheuer, Director of Climate Change and DRR, Bureau for Policy and Programme Support, UNDP

women in mountainsIn 2016, we will build on our $2.3 billion climate portfolio across 140 countries and expand our support on climate change mitigation and adaptation. Photo: UNDP Turkey
In this blog series, UNDP experts and practitioners share their perspective on issues of climate change, in light of the COP21 conference held in December. Having witnessed the international community reach (and celebrate) a global climate deal in Paris last week, I have been reflecting on the journey that brought us here, as well as picturing the long but important road ahead. First, while there has been much talk about the relative significance of the Paris agreement, I would like to echo a sentiment expressed by the New Yorker’s Elizabeth Kolbert: the deal is a success simply because the alternative was no deal at all. Business as usual is not an option, and the Paris agreement, while not perfect, is a landmark that brings together 196 parties. The bottom-up nature of the agreement is certainly a worthy first step. The global climate team I manage has worked tirelessly for well over a year with dozens of countries to help prepare their climate targets (Intended Nationally Determined Contributions or INDCs) and we proudly watched as countries submitted them. These targets, as spelled out in the Paris agreement, will now be included in a global registry and serve as both roadmap and measuring … Read more

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