Global leaders reach historic climate change deal

President Obama: ‘Paris Accord best chance to save planet’

President Obama and over 200 world leaders reached a historic climate change deal on Saturday, pledging to fight climbing temperatures and rising seas and delivering a major victory to President Obama, who has made climate change a key part of his presidency. The pact is the most aggressive international plan ever put in place to combat climate change and comes after more than two decades of often tortured United Nations talks that have pitted the U.S. and other industrialized nations against poor countries over who should shoulder the burden for protecting the planet from the greenhouse gases spewed by smokestacks and tailpipes.

The deal, which is the product of two weeks of tense negotiations, won’t by itself do enough to stop damaging temperature rises. But negotiators said the pact is a down payment on a decades-long push to bring emissions into balance by the end of the century. he Paris Agreement, the document submitted by host France calls for limiting rising temperatures to within 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) compared to pre-industrial levels by the year 2100. But it keeps the door open to a more ambitious 1.5-degree (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) rise sought by some small island nations threatened by rising sea levels — one of many catastrophic consequences of global warming. Pope Francis, who has urged a vigorous fight against global warming, has endorsed the tougher target.

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