The word that nearly killed the climate agreement
THE acceptance of the Paris agreement was met with cheers that rang across La Seine, the specially constructed hall for the historic talks.
The head of the UN climate change body Christiana Figueres gave a speech that had her staff dancing in the aisles.
But just a few hours before the celebrations, there was a crisis that nearly saw the entire deal unravel agonisingly close to its conclusion.
The sharp-eyed legal advisers in the United States delegation noticed something had changed between the penultimate draft and the final version being presented.
Where the word "should" had been used in all previous drafts, the word "shall" was, for some unknown reason, now in its place.
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