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11 Dec 2020 • Makii

Fight for 1.5°

It's been 5 years now, since the Paris agreement. Are we on track to ward off the most disastrous outcomes of climate change?
  • Standing in the freezing cold, just as the sun set, might’ve not been the most comfortable place to hang out but making your voices heard isn’t always pleasant. Today, the Fridays For Future activists organized an important gathering of young and old here in Berlin. We joined them to make a mark in the “Fight For 1.5°”. 

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  • In 2015 representatives of 196 countries huddled in endless meetings over 2 weeks in the French capital to finally approve the Paris agreement. After 25 years of governments being warned of the dangers of a changing climate by the scientific community, the Paris agreement set a vital milestone, with the participating countries representing 97% of global emissions.  

    “The Paris agreement is a powerful signal of hope in the face of the climate emergency.” said Remy Rioux, one of the French government team who led the talks

  • Fast forward 5 years

    We are still digging up and burning fossil fuels at a frantic pace. Meanwhile we continue to destroy the world's carbon sinks, by cutting down forests, drying out wetlands and reducing the oceans capacity to absorb carbon from the atmosphere. 

    “We have lost a lot of time. Five years after the agreement in Paris was adopted with huge expectations and commitment by world leaders, we have not done enough.” Ban Ki-moon, former UN secretary-general, told The Guardian.

  • Staying optimistic

    While the Paris agreement could be judged a failure to some degree, there are more and more countries coming forward announcing net zero targets for 2050. A reason to be hopeful BUT renewing the shorter term commitments will be key in building back better. 

    “None of these [net zero] targets will be meaningful without very aggressive action in this decade of the 2020s. I think there is growing, but not yet broad enough, understanding of that reality.” said Todd Stern, climate envoy to President Barack Obama

    To make clear, the importance and urgency of keeping global heating within the realm of 1.5 degrees and to put climate protection and justice on top of the agenda of the world’s governments, signals like the one today set by the FFF activists are still necessary.

  • We will continue to support Fridays For Future, in the streets and from home. To find out what you can do, no matter where you are check out the FFF website.

    See you at the next demo!

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Title picture: Brandenburger Tor Berlin, 11.12.20 © Tagesspiegel