Center for American Progress

RELEASE: Realism at COP 21: The Case for International Climate Cooperation
Press Release

RELEASE: Realism at COP 21: The Case for International Climate Cooperation

Washington, D.C. — Hundreds of climate leaders and heads of state are meeting in Paris over the next two weeks to work out a historic climate agreement. Known as the 21st Conference of the Parties, or COP 21, the summit is an indicator that global leaders now recognize climate change as a global threat—one that requires a coordinated global response. The Center for American Progress released a column today arguing that, as with many responses to shared threats, threatened states should form an alliance against climate change as part of the realist approach seen throughout history.

“For most states, the threat of climate change is not theoretical, nor is it something that can be put off for the next generation,” said Ken Sofer, CAP Senior Policy Advisor. “The threat exists now, and the window for mitigating that threat is closing. The expected agreement from the COP 21 summit is a sign that global leaders such as the United States and China now recognize the need for action and are coming together to combat the common threat of climate change.”

Climate change poses the greatest long-term risk to global security, and the COP 21 climate summit is the capstone of the multiyear effort of President Barack Obama’s administration to build an international consensus to combat it. It has led to involvement from developing countries that had not previously been willing to participate and historic agreements between powers such as the United States and China to make real and lasting changes to their carbon emissions policies.

Click here to read the column.

For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, contact Tom Caiazza at tcaiazza@americanprogress.org or 202.481.7141.

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