Climate-affected internally displaced persons board a boat to travel to Dhaka, Bangladesh.
© M Ponir Hossain / Photoshare: Climate-affected internally displaced persons board a boat to travel to Dhaka, Bangladesh.

COP21: Historic climate change agreement reached in Paris

17th December 2015

The COP21 climate negotiations in Paris concluded with the adoption of the Paris Accord, as agreed by the 195 Member States party to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. 

This agreement was an unprecedented success, with countries committing to actions that will limit global temperature rises to 'well-below' the anticipated target of 2ºC, and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increases to 1-5ºC. Progress on national commitments to reduce emissions in order to reach this target will be reviewed every 5 years, beginning in 2018.

Adaptive measures will be critical in mitigating climate change, and developed countries have pledged USD 100 billon to support development and implementation of appropriate strategies in developing countries. 

Furthermore, the concept of health as an adverse effect of climate change is embedded in the agreement, with a reference to the human right to health included in the preamble, and health cited as an incentive for short term action between 2016 and 2020. This will serve as a catalyst for further action around collaboration to use health is effectively addressed as part of the response to climate change going forward.

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