The importance of the Paris Agreement

John MacArthur, president of Shell VP Group Carbon, believes the Paris Agreement is universal, dynamic and highly ambitious. It´s a message aimed at all markets, reinforcing the idea that it´s time we invested in a low-carbon economy

The world has been warming up, but never at the rate we are witnessing today. Climate change is largely caused by human activity. One of the main goals of the Paris Agreement is, precisely, to limit the increase in the global temperature to less than 2º C. To achieve this, all countries and sectors of the economy will need to invest in a cleaner and more balanced world. This involves corporations and governments leading the change in paradigm we are experiencing. “Shell´s strategies are in line with the parameters imposed by the Paris Agreement and this means investing 1 to 2 billion in alternatives per year”, underlines John MacArthur, from Shell.

“Nowadays, people know what the Paris Agreement means”, states John MacArthur. Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old Swedish activist, is an excellent example of how young people today are aware of the problem of climate change. “I think this issue has gained increasing visibility in society and people are making their choices.”
In addition to the essential role of corporations and governments, we as individuals can and must be responsible for our own behaviour. “We all have a role to play. Different roles, for sure, but individually we can choose to travel by car less frequently or install solar panels in our homes. No effort is too small to help”, concludes MacArthur.

Portugal, and above all Lisbon, has been quoted as an example to be followed with regard to mobility. For example, it should be reiterated that the Portuguese capital was the first European city to implement a shared bicycle system for its residents. The company Uber chose Lisbon, in early-2019, in which to implement its bicycles, the philosophy of which, within the scope of the promotion of sustainable transport, is part of the local authorities´ vision to provide shared mobility services which are, increasingly, an alternative to the use of private automobiles. This involved 750 bicycles in all, 100% of which are electric. MacArthur guarantees he can “see countless signs that Portugal is a country that is modernising its infrastructure, making it more efficient, and improving its mobility”.