With a busy week behind you and the weekend within reach, there’s no shame in taking things a bit easy on Friday afternoon. With this in mind, every Friday TriplePundit will give you a fun, easy read on a topic you care about. So, take a break from those endless email threads and spend five minutes catching up on the latest trends in sustainability and business.
This morning, Nick Nuttall, coordinator of communications and outreach for the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), told the press that COP21 negotiations will continue into Saturday "to reach the best possible deal."
While we're waiting to see if the Paris talks will culminate in a long-awaited global agreement on climate change, let's catch up on all the big news of the week.
But when we look decades into the future, it’s important to remember how our world will change. For example, in 1950, 30 percent of the world’s population lived in urban areas. By 2050, nearly 70 percent will call urban areas home. Our rapidly urbanizing world presents both challenges and opportunities, as the representatives from the Lima-Paris Action Agenda discussed at COP21.
With agriculture alone accounting for over a quarter of global greenhouse emissions, the solutions they discussed may well be critically important to the success of COP21 on the other side of the city.
This is according to a new report from Corporate Accountability International, which found that four French companies sponsoring the climate talks – Engie, EDF, Suez Environment and BNP Paribas – are responsible for more than $15 billion invested in the coal industry; and more than 200 megatons of CO2 equivalent emissions – more than the yearly output of all but 20 countries.
Dozens of silent protesters took action at COP21, picketing an Engie-sponsored side discussion at the civil society space at Le Bourget in Paris. Many also stepped up to question fossil fuel companies' regular ploy of paying off academics to spout climate denial.
TriplePundit sat down with Heather Coleman, who manages Oxfam America’s climate policy work, to find out more about the unique challenges facing delegations from small, low-income countries, and what that means for their ability to engage effectively with the negotiations in Paris.
That group is the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF), made up of 43 member-countries, including more than 20 who joined at the onset of COP21. They are the true heroes of this COP, pushing for a 1.5-degrees Celsius limit on global temperature rise.
As Kerry explained in his speech, it is a “moral responsibility to adapt and prepare for those impacts and enable the most vulnerable among us to do the same."
How big is that pile? Bigger than you thought. In fact, a staggering $436 billion in subsidies is now being spent to prop up an old dirty industry that is smack dab in the middle of destroying the livelihoods of millions of individuals around the world.
3p correspondent Nithin Coca explains: "As we wrote about earlier this COP, climate finance is one of the most contentious issues, and thus far, the agreement includes several provisions previously agreed to, and a few positive changes. It’s not enough, but hopefully it means more will come."
Image credit: Mary Mazzoni
Mary Mazzoni, Senior Editor, has written for TriplePundit since 2013. She is also Managing Editor of CR Magazine and the Editor of 3p’s Sponsored Series. Mazzoni’s recent work can be found in Conscious Company, AlterNet and VICE’s Motherboard. She is based in Philadelphia, PA.