Climate Justice, Adaptation and the Paris Agreement: A Recipe for Disasters?

Environmental Politics, Vol. 26, No. 3, pp, 438-458, 2017

Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 16/104

18 Pages Posted: 12 Dec 2016 Last revised: 11 May 2017

See all articles by Rosemary Lyster

Rosemary Lyster

The University of Sydney Law School

Date Written: December 11, 2016

Abstract

This article adopts a Capability Approach to critically analysing, in the interests of Climate Justice, whether the Paris Agreement is likely to adequately protect human and non-human Capabilities from the impacts of climate disasters. The author concludes that the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change have a long way to go in their negotiations on mitigation, adaptation and loss and damage before they have any hope of meeting their agreed temperature goals, and protecting human and non-human Capabilities from climate disasters. In any case, adaptation offers only a modest response to climate change, compared with mitigation, and current financial commitments to fund adaptation in developing countries are far too low. While the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, and the Sustainable Development Goals incorporate actions to be taken in a climate changed world, these instruments are at their earliest stages of implementation and there is as yet no indication of whether they will meet the challenges posed by climate disasters, within the time frames needed.

Keywords: UNFCCC, Paris Agreement, temperature goals, IPCC, climate disasters, human and non-human Capabilities, nationally determined contributions, emissions reduction targets, adaptation, climate finance, Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage, insurance, post-disaster payments, compensation

JEL Classification: K10, K30, K32

Suggested Citation

Lyster, Rosemary, Climate Justice, Adaptation and the Paris Agreement: A Recipe for Disasters? (December 11, 2016). Environmental Politics, Vol. 26, No. 3, pp, 438-458, 2017; Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 16/104. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2883910

Rosemary Lyster (Contact Author)

The University of Sydney Law School ( email )

New Law Building, F10
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

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