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French Government Violates Agreement

Climate change is something that affects the entire world but to different degrees. In fact, according to the World Health Organization(WHO), people die each year due directly due to the air pollution in our atmosphere. This was an ever-growing problem so five years ago in France, the Paris Climate Agreement was drafted. It was created and signed in hopes of reducing the emissions caused by greenhouse gasses. The agreement also aims to put a limit on global warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius over the pre-industrial levels, and if possible, preferably 1.5 degrees. However, the French Government has not been upholding their part of the agreement.

Recently a group of non-governmental organizations(NGOs) supported by over 2 million citizens submitted a formal complaint addressing the French government’s failure to put effort into halting climate change. According to the international news station, France 24, as of last week Wednesday, “the Paris administrative court recognized ecological damage linked to climate change and held the French state responsible for failing to fully meet its goals in reducing greenhouse gases.” Also adding that after the 2015 Paris Agreement was set, the country chose to delay most of its efforts until after 2020. To hold them responsible, the French court ordered that the state must pay the symbolic sum of 1 euro in compensation for their “moral prejudice.”

What does this have to do with the United States? Well, Donald Trump had previously pulled the U.S. out of the deal alongside then-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. They aimed to prove that the U.S. was on a path to exceed the goals without needing assistance from, or wanting to be a part of the deal. Climate experts say the current governments haven’t acted enough to keep their commitments to the agreement, and due to that, many people have sought out the courts as a means of pushing governments to take more action.

The current French President, Emmanuel Macron, has been and still is very open and vocal about his support for climate change action both in his country and in general around the globe.

France 24, also broadcasted the news that as of this past December, he had pushed for “beefing up the European Union’s 2030 targets to reduce greenhouse gases by at least 55% compared with 1990 levels — up from the previous 40% target.” Also, after the elections, President Joe Biden committed to rejoining the Paris Agreement. On the day of the inauguration, he signed an executive order, which then also promptly canceled the Keystone XL Pipeline, sacrificing over 11,000 jobs in the name of a cleaner future.

Greenpeace, France, and other organizations feel that Macron’s lobbying for global climate action is not being adequately supported by domestic measures meant to curb emissions being blamed for global warming. So currently, the Paris court has allowed themselves two months to decide on what they can do to repair the problem and stop the issue from persisting.


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