Climate negotiators in Paris have approved a historic agreement that would put the world on a pathway to keeping the global average temperature rise above pre-industrial levels “well below” 2 degrees Celsius while “pursuing efforts to limit temperature increase to 1.5 C.”
Nearly 200 nations took part in the COP21 talks in Paris, working for the past two weeks on a deal to mitigate the worst effects of global warming, a process of change which has already begun to impact some of the world’s most vulnerable communities through extreme weather, rising seas, and drought.
The final draft was presented Saturday by French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius before being subsequently approved Saturday afternoon by 195 nations in a suburb outside the French capital.
Before the agreement officially goes into effect, it must be ratified by at least 55 individual countries. It is the first agreement that asks all countries to collectively tackle the problem of global warming, a major shift in U.N. talks that previously included pledges only by rich, not poor, nations.