Paris climate pact: Who won, who lost out, and who was forced to compromise

LE BOURGET, France -- The climate deal adopted in suburban Paris was the culmination of four years of negotiations on how to get nearly all countries to jointly reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that scientists say are warming the planet.

See Full Article

The talks were difficult and sometimes teetered on the brink of collapse. Every country made compromises to get the deal done, but some got more than others by the time the gavel dropped on Saturday.

Here's a look at winners in the Paris climate agreement and some who came up short:

SMALL ISLANDS

The tiniest countries were arguably the biggest winners in the deal. Tuvalu, Marshall Islands, Maldives, Kiribati and other island nations pushed hard for two things. First, a global commitment to at least try to limit Earth's warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) compared to pre-industrial times. Second, recognition that they're going to need help to deal with damage caused by rising seas, more extreme weather and other impacts of climate change. They got both, though with some caveats.

UNITED STATES

The deal in some ways looks like a wish list from U.S. negotiators. It has no new legally binding emissions or financial targets, which would have prevented President Barack Obama from accepting it without approval from the Republican-controlled Congress. It allows countries to set their own emissions targets, rather than having to negotiate them with other countries. And it requires everyone, not just rich countries, to set emissions targets and be transparent about what they are doing to meet them.

FRANCE

Almost everyone involved in the talks heaped praise on France for making the deal come together. With masterful diplomacy, the French built bridges and gave every country confidence that its voice was being heard. France also earned respect for staying the course despite the bomb-and-gun massacres in Paris just weeks before the climate conference.

CHINA

The world's biggest greenhouse gas polluter didn't have to cross any of its red lines. Though a strict firewall between developed and developing countries is gone, the deal still reflects different capabilities of rich and poor throughout the text, a key Chinese demand. Another win for Beijing is that, unlike at the chaotic climate summit six years ago in Copenhagen, China wasn't seen as blocking the talks in Paris.

INDIA

Indian Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar blended praise with criticism in his post-deal speech, suggesting he had mixed feelings about the outcome. Knowing its emissions are expected to peak later than those of other major economies, India made sure the text includes some leeway for developing nations. It reluctantly accepted the 1.5 degree goal and failed to get the deal to oblige rich countries to provide clean technology free of intellectual property rights to poor ones.

EUROPEAN UNION

The Europeans didn't come out of Paris looking like the leaders they want to be -- and in many cases are -- on climate change. They helped form a "high-ambition coalition" of rich and poor countries, but it wasn't clear whether the alliance was anything but symbolic. The EU successfully introduced a mechanism in the deal designed to ramp up emissions targets over time, but caved on demands that the targets be legally binding.

SAUDI ARABIA

Oil-rich Saudi Arabia argued against the 1.5-degree temperature target and a long-term goal to phase out emissions. It lost both battles. However, the long-term goal doesn't specifically mention emissions from fossil fuels, a small win for the Saudis.

FOSSIL FUELS

The biggest loser in the Paris agreement could be the fossil fuel industry. The deal signals to businesses that governments will enact policies over time to promote a shift toward cleaner energy sources, such as wind and solar power. Of course, it remains to be seen whether they follow up on their pledges. In response to the deal, the World Coal Association referred to projections that "electricity generation from coal would grow by 24 per cent by 2040" even with the emissions targets countries have set so far.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Vatican-OK'd journal strikes out again at U.S. evangelicals

    World News CTV News
    VATICAN CITY -- A Vatican-approved journal has launched its second major critique of American evangelicals, dismissing "prosperity gospel" theology as a "pseudo" faith dangerously tied up with the American Dream and President Donald Trump's politics. Source
  • RCMP dive team joins search for swimmer in Buntzen Lake near Vancouver

    Canada News CTV News
    ANMORE, B.C. -- The RCMP dive team has been called to a lake in Metro Vancouver to assist in the search for a missing man. A news release from Coquitlam RCMP says the dive team will join officers and civilian searchers who have been at Buntzen Lake since just before 5 p.m. Source
  • Parks Canada plans 1,325-hectare expansion of Bruce Peninsula National Park

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Parks Canada says it has reached an agreement to acquire a privately owned parcel of land in Ontario's Georgian Bay area to expand the Bruce Peninsula National Park. The agency says the 1,324-hectare property includes 6.5 kilometres of uninterrupted shoreline, and is home to at least 10 federally listed species at risk and dozens of ecologically, geologically and culturally significant cave systems. Source
  • HMCS Ville de Quebec departs Halifax with new Cyclone helicopter aboard

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX - Hundreds of people gathered on a jetty at Halifax's naval base today to bid farewell to 240 military members aboard HMCS Ville de Quebec. Under pouring rain, family, friends and dignitaries waved goodbye as the warship departed in thick fog for the Mediterranean Sea, part of Canada's ongoing contribution to a NATO mission in central and eastern Europe. Source
  • 'Rushed to judgment': Ontario ombudsman says Niagara journalist’s rights infringed

    Canada News CTV News
    Ontario’s ombudsman found that the Niagara regional government “rushed to judgment” and infringed on a local journalist’s rights when it seized his property and called the police. In a report released on Wednesday, ombudsman Paul Dube said that the region’s actions towards the journalist that occurred during a council meeting in December 2017 constituted “the type of conduct that courts have consistently found to be a violation of Charter rights. Source
  • U.S. panel would provide $5B for Trump border wall

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- A House spending bill would provide $5 billion next year for building U.S. President Donald Trump's proposed border wall with Mexico, a major boost that suggests a raucous pre-election budget battle may lay ahead. Source
  • Boris Johnson accuses PM May of 'dithering' on Brexit in resignation speech

    World News CBC News
    Boris Johnson, in his first public comments since resigning last week as Britain's foreign secretary, urged his party in the House of Commons on Wednesday to not abandon a hard Brexit approach while there's still time. Source
  • U.S. regulators may ban use of 'milk' for soy, almond drinks

    World News CTV News
    NEW YORK -- Soy and almond drinks don't come from cows, so regulators may soon ask them to stop calling themselves "milk." The Food and Drug Administration is signalling that it plans to start enforcing a federal standard that defines "milk" as coming from the "milking of one or more healthy cows. Source
  • Restaurant calls out teen on Facebook for paying bill with coins

    World News CTV News
    A Virginia restaurant is facing backlash after it appeared to mock a teenager online for paying for a meal with coins. On Monday, Cohen Naulty treated a few friends to lunch at the Beer 88 restaurant in Lynchburg, Va. Source
  • Alleged assault of Muslim man appears to have been motivated by hate, police say

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Police say an alleged assault in southern Ontario that sent a Muslim man to hospital on Sunday appears to have been motivated by hate. Peel regional police say they were called to investigate a fight in Mississauga, Ont. Source