Published originally in December 2015 By Mawutodzi Kodzo Abissath of Accra, Ghana (the full piece was also published on the Ghanaian government site here).
A funny African proverb says something to this effect: “A ram that is suffering from diarrhea messes up its own hind legs but boasts that it is soiling the pathway for commuters.”
Fellow citizens of the world, at long last, the much-touted UN Climate Change Summit 2015, dubbed Paris COP 21, has come to an end! And “Mother Earth, our Common Home” is free forever! Hopefully.
Trust the international civil servants with their legalese and romantic use of the English language when it comes to UN-sponsored events. But as a layman and for the purpose of this article, I intend to try as much as possible to break down the technical terms so that our own Junior High School graduates can understand the basic import of the Agreement that was adopted in Paris. After all is not the Agreement for future generations?
Adoption of the Paris Agreement
On Monday, November 30, 2015, the Conference of the Parties’ twenty-first session in Paris (COP 21) took off in Paris, France. The jaw-jaw exercises ended on Friday, December 11, 2015. The protocol (legal instrument) that was adopted is known as the Paris Agreement. It is under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), simply referred to as “the Agreement.”
Even before I elaborate on the Paris Agreement, let me inform my fellow citizens of the world that the said Agreement has only partially been signed.
After the UN Secretary-General has signed the document (which he did in April of 2016), he, in turn, invites the rest of the member states of the world body,