This last weekend concluded the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. This historic meeting of world leaders made significant moves towards shaping the climate and green energy stances of the world’s wealthiest countries.
What is somewhat amusing (and terrifying) is that in the final hours, the entire agreement was almost derailed by what has now been determined to be a typo.
As the whole proceedings were running long, past the Friday conclusion deadline, the United States was headed towards signing the final agreement. However in these final moments, it was spotted that a “should” has been changed to a “shall.” This is to say that the contract read as legally binding “wealthier countries SHALL assist poorer countries with green energy initiatives” as opposed to the less legal should.
This stopped the United States in their tracks when it was noticed and Secretary of State John Kerry informed his French counterpart that the U.S. would be unable to accept these new terms. This change was not expected and had been an alteration after many rounds of revision.
It was thankfully revealed to be a clerical typo in the final draft. The change was made back to should and was signed.
This is a massive win for green energy as it acknowledges that climate change is a humankind concern and outlines steps to combat it on a global scale.