The 12 December Paris climate agreement has been widely acclaimed, described by many as a historical deal, following the failure of the previous summit in Copenhagen in 2009. A total of 195 nations confirmed in a legal framework their ambitions to phase out fossil fuels, and embark on a low-carbon and more sustainable future. And while observers and analysts are now seriously questioning its real substance, key oil and gas companies and institutions have welcomed the agreement.

The key...