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Climate change: Why isn’t Nicaragua in the Paris agreement?


· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

Ever since US President Donald Trump declared that he would withdraw the US from the landmark Paris climate change agreement, much has been made of the fact only two other countries have not signed up.


They are Syria, and the Central American nation of Nicaragua - but the US is very different from either. Syria has been embroiled in a civil war for six years, leaving 300,000 dead, so it is perhaps understandable that it did not participate in talks.


Nicaragua’s reason for refusing the deal, though, is not because it wanted to burn more fossil fuels, but because the agreement did not go far enough. The country already gets more than half of its energy from renewable resources, and plans to bump that up to 90% by 2020.


A 2013 World Bank report labelled it "a renewable energy paradise", with extensive opportunity for geothermic, wind, solar and wave energy. When the Paris deal was being negotiated, Nicaragua said there was a total mismatch between what the document said was needed to prevent climate change, and what signatories proposed to do about it.


The goal of the Paris agreement is to restrict temperature increases by 2100 to a maximum of two degrees Celsius more than before the global industrial age - and aim for 1.5C if possible.


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