President Obama proclaimed the Paris climate change agreement to be the “best possible shot to save the one planet we’ve got” during a statement Wednesday at the White House.
Obama’s remarks came after 55 countries producing at least 55 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions joined the deal–the necessary threshold for ratification. The agreement will go into effect next month. The European Union pushed it over the top this week, joining the U.S., China, and other world leaders. The goal of the agreement is for nations to monitor both their own and other countries’ emissions in the hopes of preventing the global temperature from rising two degrees Celsius by 2100.
“The Paris agreement alone will not solve the climate crisis,” Obama said. “Even if we meet every target embodied in the agreement, we’ll only get to part of where we need to go. But make no mistake, this agreement will help delay or avoid some of the worst consequences of climate change. It will help other nations ratchet down their dangerous carbon emissions over times and set bolder targets as technology advances, all under a strong system of transparency that allows each nation to evaluate the progress of all other nations.”
“And by sending a signal that this is going to be our future, a clean energy future, it opens up the floodgates for businesses and scientists and engineers to unleash high-tech, low-carbon investment and innovation at a scale that we’ve never seen before,” Obama continued. “So it gives us the best possible shot to save the one planet we’ve got.”