BY MOLLY RAUCH

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The UN climate agreement finalized in Paris over the weekend comes just in time for the holiday season. This historic moment feels like a gift for my children, adding a warm light to the darkest time of the year.

No, it’s not enough. The pollution reductions enshrined in the agreement — even if fully implemented — will lead to global temperature increases far beyond the 1.5 degrees Celsius scientists warn us would stretch civilization to its limits.

No, this agreement won’t fix the problem. We are in for a much longer, harder journey than it would have been if nations had started addressing climate change a few decades ago, when scientists first raised the alarm. Time isn’t on our side, and we have to both meet and strengthen our commitments to a safe climate on a global scale, with blinding speed. “We” means we, all of us, every single one, and that’s never been an easy task.

But.

This agreement offers hope for my children. For your children. For all the world’s children, and all the children still to come in this world. Before this agreement there was no international consensus on how and even whether to address this issue. Now there is.

And so much more, too.

Here are four things the Paris climate agreement gives my children.

  • No more excuses. For the first time, the world’s nations have united to stop climate change. We are all in this together — and the UN climate agreement has enshrined that axiom. That’s important because for years, climate couch potatoes have argued that the US shouldn’t pitch in to stop pollution if other countries aren’t going to make changes. That excuse is gone. The nations of the world have come together and agreed to take action. It’s time to get off the couch and get moving.

I attended the climate talks in Paris to make sure the voices of parents were heard loud and clear by the negotiators. I wanted an agreement that would protect my kids from climate chaos. Although our work is not yet over, the Paris agreement has set us on the right path.

Happy holidays!

TELL EPA: WE NEED LIMITS ON EXISTING SOURCES OF METHANE EMISSIONS

We are more than 1 million moms and dads united against air pollution — including the urgent crisis of our changing climate — to protect our children’s health.

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