Improving waste management in emerging economies makes a substantial contribution in the fight against climate change

by Jean-Louis Chaussade, CEO of SUEZ

Limiting the rise in our planet’s average temperatures to 2°C by the end of the century is now widely accepted as a necessity. Today, the numerous effects of global warming on water, biodiversity and health are well-recognised. The main culprit is greenhouse gas emissions. Which is why the COP21 climate change conference made it a priority to set targets to cut carbon emissions, leading to ratification of the first universal climate agreement.

Adopted by 127 parties of the 197 present at the conference in Le Bourget, representing between them almost 80% of global carbon emissions, the Paris Agreement came into effect on 4 November 2016. In signing it, countries committed to significantly reducing their greenhouse gas emissions – in the European Union by 40% before 2030 and by 80-95% in 2050 compared with 1990 levels and in Morocco by 42% before 2030. China, the world’s second largest economy, pledged that its carbon emissions will peak by 2030 and that it will reduce the proportion of fossil fuels in its energy mix.