Published: Sat, 12 December 2015
“Ireland will benefit from the historic climate change agreement which is almost certain to be agreed in Paris this evening (Saturday) and we should embrace it”, Seán Kelly MEP, the only Irish MEP of the European Parliament’s negotiating team at the UN’s Global Climate Change Conference said in Paris as the final deal was presented this morning.
The Ireland South MEP had highlighted the vulnerability of Ireland to flooding in discussions with negotiators in Paris this week, because of high rainfall levels and our Atlantic location.
“I am particularly delighted to confirm that EU priorities are provided for in the final proposed agreement being presented here in Paris this morning.
“We came here with the aim of achieving a legally binding and ambitious agreement to maintain EU competitiveness and allay fears about carbon leakage.
“It was vital that we came away with a predictable framework for a stable climate system for future food security, energy production, water and sanitation, infrastructure, the preservation of biodiversity and ecosystems, and, indeed, global peace and prosperity.
“None of that would be possible without a real and concrete global commitment to put the world on a cost-effective emissions trajectory. Thankfully, we have that deal in sight now as its almost certain to be agreed today,” he said.
“Across all sectors, Climate Change is causing 190 billion euros worth of damage in the EU annually, according to last year’s study by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. But the experts predicted that figure could double if no action was taken – today’s deal will prevent that nightmare future if fully adhered to.
“The objective to limit the global temperature to well below 2 degrees or even 1.5 degrees Celsius is extremely welcome. Today’s agreement, if adopted, will ultimately help us prevent unprecedented levels of damage, like that of the flooding witnessed in Ireland in recent days, and save lives in some cases.
“Prevention is better than the cure – the amount of money we spend to repair the damages caused by the effects of Climate Change are far greater than what we could invest now in clean technologies and energy infrastructure that accommodates high share of renewables and so on,” Mr Kelly concluded.
Delegates are to decide whether or not to agree the final deal later this afternoon/early evening.