COP21: parliamentarians push for an ambitious Paris agreement on climate change

Debating a move from climate science to parliamentary action, the legislators gathered in Paris on 5-6 December 2015 during the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21) asked themselves: are we fit for purpose? How can national parliaments push for a strong global deal on climate?

“Parliaments should focus on what they do best: promote national climate laws and get them recognised in the global agreement; they must hold governments to account on national commitments to combat global warming and press negotiators in a bottom-up manner”, said Lord Prescott, former Chairperson of the PACE’s Sub-Committee on Environment and Energy, when addressing a major parliamentary gathering organised by the IPU and the French Parliament.

“More than ever before, legislators are taking centre stage in steering efforts against global warming. They can act forcefully in proposing climate-friendly law packages, validating national budgets with ample provisions for climate action and ratifying the international agreement, hopefully to be agreed by the end of this week”,- continued Lord Prescott.

“Both the public and private sectors should seize the low-hanging fruit via sustainable climate action, because what is good for the planet is good for its people and businesses. Let us get our priorities right and honour our promises”, insisted Lord Prescott speaking at the panel discussion on the “Credibility of national actions: worldwide legislative and policy developments”, organised at the initiative of the IPU and the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment” on 8 December 2015 in Paris, on the premises of COP21.