At a plenary session on Saturday, countries tried to grapple with how to recognise the IPCC report on 1.5 Degrees in writing.
New Zealand had the honour of Sir Peter Gluckman, Chief Scientific advisor to Prime Minister John Key and Chair of International Network for Governmental Scientific Advice, being the keynote speaker at the opening of the United Nations Environment Assembly 2 (UNEA2) Science and Policy Forum.
This was always the road through Paris rather than the road to Paris, which means that New Zealand must commit to the long term goal and increase its climate ambition.
The fast made me slow. Unable to concentrate, I moved around the convention centre on fossilised legs. The slowmotion state of blood pumping insufficient sugar throughout my circulation felt like a form of death. But death itself was moving too slowly to be lethal. When I stood to give a speech it felt hollow, a cliché reflection of my stomach.
Paris2015 has begun and yesterday marked the largest gathering of world leaders on one day in one place in the history of the UN.
Wait... but why? What's the big deal? The big deal is the biggest deal on climate change in the history of big climate change deals. Before packing our bags I spoke with David Tong of Fast for the Climate (fastfortheclimate.org) to get a bit of insight into the past 20 years of the UN climate negotiations, and explore why Paris2015 is the big one... but definitely not the last one.
Following the cancellation of the Paris Climate March amid security fears, the climate community did what they've long been asking the international community to do: adapt to a changing environment. What would have been tens of thousands of feet marching on the streets of Paris transformed into 10,000 empty shoes at Place de la République, as well as a creative action, known as the Human Chain.