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The beautiful Champs-Elysees is lit with millions of sparkling lights.One evening during the COP21 climate change conference this month, there was neither sunlight nor wind, so organizers asked those of us strolling down the avenue to power the lights via stationary bikes and hamster wheels.Even if the promised emissions cuts continued throughout the century, the Paris agreement would cut global temperature rises by just 0.17 degrees Celsius.The agreement concluded at COP21 goes further than the much-discussed target of capping the global temperature increase at 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels, but actually states that the aim is to keep the increase "well below 2 degrees Celsius" with an effort to cap it at 1.5 degrees Celsius.So, the Paris Agreement is a phenomenally expensive but almost empty gesture – much like the bicycles and hamster wheels cluttering the Champs-Elysees. When I came across them, they and the huge wind turbine and hundreds of solar panels had produced 321 kWh of energy in nine days.
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