The COP21 climate summit in Paris and the human costs of inaction, laid out in 2 short videos

COP21, explained
(Image credit: The Wall Street Journal/YouTube)

The global climate change summit in Paris, COP21, is a pretty big deal, with a lot riding on what the 150 or so world leaders commit to for reducing greenhouse-gas emissions. Given what's at stake, there are quite a few points of friction, especially between rich and poor countries, and in the video below, The Wall Street Journal explains the goals, expectations, and the challenges of the summit succinctly and instructively. "COP21's stated aim is to combat climate change," concludes reporter Jason Bellini, but "the nitty-gritty of negotiations could mostly be about the worldly concern of money." It's a helpful primer to the talks and the buzzwords you'll hear or read about in other coverage of COP21:

While the WSJ explains how COP21 is trying to save humankind's future, The Economist focuses on how countries are already adapting to the real, painful effects of climate change, focusing on Bangladesh:

The main takeaway is probably that, with aid, developing countries can and are adapting to increased drought, flooding, and other massive disruptions to their livelihood, but if the rate of change doesn't slow considerably, nature may outrun humanity's ability to stay in heavily affected regions. The subtext is that if the inhabitants of Bangladesh and elsewhere can't survive in their home countries, they'll have to go somewhere else, probably in large numbers.

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