The Davos virtual forum ended on a note of agreement: "we should act", "do something" in the face of the escalating climate catastrophe, the uncontrolled loss of biodiversity, the rise of inequalities and the risks of economic and financial instability. President Emmanuel Macron reiterated his call to break with the Washington consensus and establish a new consensus, that of Paris, focused in particular on the fight against inequalities and climate change. But for the roadmap, of course, we will have to wait ...
It’s no use looking instead to announcements from leading financial institutions like the ECB and BlackRock for concrete commitments, either. While 2021 must be the year of action for biodiversity and the climate, economic and political leaders are doubling down on announcements and commitments which are extremely long-term in their scope, without changing anything in their daily operations which, themselves, are propelling us to a world over 4 °C.
For once, hope comes from the United States, where the Biden administration seems to want to make up for lost time. Among the numerous announcements last week is the end of fossil fuel subsidies. Will Biden go so far as to follow the United Kingdom, which has announced the end of public support for new fossil energy projects abroad? Or will he follow the path of France, which for its part has pledged not to fully put an end to this practice until 2035?
We can only hope so, because the climate goals of the Paris Agreement can only be achieved one way: leaving the fossil fuels in the ground.