Equity After Paris

This is an unjust world, but the climate transition cannot not be. If we’re to have a real chance at the Paris temperature targets, we must avoid narrow nationalism and commit to equity. Yet, even after the Paris breakthrough, equity is treated as an irritant or a danger by even by some of our high level champions. several of whom are prone to railing against “burden sharing” and even “carbon budgets.”

ECO begs to differ, noting the Paris Agreement established a Global Stocktake process that is explicitly to be conducted “in the light of equity.” It would not be wise to conduct a first major assessment in 2018 (code name “facilitated dialogue”) of our various climate actions without considering equity.

Do we imagine that poor countries are going to develop strategies for decarbonisation—which have to be visionary and ambitious by their very nature—without substantial and predictable channels of support? And what about the need to face together the immense suffering and destruction that we hide with dry UNFCCC jargon? We need to start talking, with all due seriousness, of the equity challenges on this front.

This must be a just transition, or it won’t happen at all.

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