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The Paris Agreement (French: Accord de Paris), or Paris climate accord and Paris climate agreement, is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020. The language of the agreement was negotiated by representatives of 196 parties at the 21st Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC in Paris and adopted by consensus on 12 December 2015.[3][4] As of June 2017, 195 UNFCCC members have signed the agreement, 151 of which have ratified it.[1]

Paris Agreement
Paris Agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
{{{image_alt}}}
  Parties
  Signatories
  Parties also covered by European Union ratification
  Signatories also covered by European Union ratification
Drafted 30 November – 12 December 2015
Signed 22 April 2016
Location New York
Sealed 12 December 2015
Effective 4 November 2016[1][2]
Condition Ratification/Accession by 55 UNFCCC Parties, accounting for 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions
Signatories 195[1]
Parties 151[1]
Depositary Secretary-General of the United Nations
Languages Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish
Paris Agreement at Wikisource
Agreement in Paris

In the Paris Agreement, each country determines, plans and regularly reports its own contribution it should make in order to mitigate global warming.[5] There is no mechanism to force[6] a country to set a specific target by a specific date,[7] but each target should go beyond previously set targets.

In 2017, President Donald J. Trump withdrew the United States from the agreement, causing widespread condemnation in China and the European Union.

Contents

Content

Aims

The aim of the convention is described in Article 2, "enhancing the implementation" of the UNFCCC through:[8]

"(a) Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change;
(b) Increasing the ability to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change and foster climate resilience and low greenhouse gas emissions development, in a manner that does not threaten food production;
(c) Making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development."

Countries furthermore aim to reach "global peaking of greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible". The agreement has been described as an incentive for and driver of fossil fuel divestment.[9][10]

The Paris deal is the world's first comprehensive climate agreement.[11]

Nationally determined contributions

 
Global carbon dioxide emissions by country.

The contributions that each individual country should make in order to achieve the worldwide goal are determined by all countries individually and called "nationally determined contributions" (NDCs).[5] Article 3 requires them to be "ambitious", "represent a progression over time" and set "with the view to achieving the purpose of this Agreement". The contributions should be reported every five years and are to be registered by the UNFCCC Secretariat.[12] Each further ambition should be more ambitious than the previous one, known as the principle of 'progression'.[13] Countries can cooperate and pool their nationally determined contributions. The Intended Nationally Determined Contributions pledged during the 2015 Climate Change Conference serve—unless provided otherwise—as the initial Nationally determined contribution.

The level of NDCs set by each country[7] will set that country's targets. However the 'contributions' themselves are not binding as a matter of international law, as they lack the specificity, normative character, or obligatory language necessary to create binding norms.[14] Furthermore, there will be no mechanism to force[6] a country to set a target in their NDC by a specific date and no enforcement if a set target in an NDC is not met.[7][15] There will be only a "name and shame" system[16] or as János Pásztor, the U.N. assistant secretary-general on climate change, told CBS News (US), a "name and encourage" plan.[17] As the agreement provides no consequences if countries do not meet their commitments, consensus of this kind is fragile. A trickle of nations exiting the agreement may trigger the withdrawal of more governments, bringing about a total collapse of the agreement.[18]

Effects on global temperature

The negotiators of the Agreement, however, stated that the NDCs and the 2 °C reduction target were insufficient; instead, a 1.5 °C target is required, noting "with concern that the estimated aggregate greenhouse gas emission levels in 2025 and 2030 resulting from the intended nationally determined contributions do not fall within least-cost 2 °C scenarios but rather lead to a projected level of 55 gigatonnes in 2030", and recognizing furthermore "that much greater emission reduction efforts will be required in order to hold the increase in the global average temperature to below 2 °C by reducing emissions to 40 gigatonnes or to 1.5 °C".[19]

Although not the sustained temperatures over the long term which the Agreement addresses, in the first half of 2016 average temperatures were about 1.3 °C (2.3 degrees Fahrenheit) above the average in 1880, when global record-keeping began.[20]

When the agreement achieved enough signatures to cross the threshold on 5 October 2016, US President Barack Obama claimed that "Even if we meet every target ... we will only get to part of where we need to go." He also said that "this agreement will help delay or avoid some of the worst consequences of climate change. It will help other nations ratchet down their emissions over time, and set bolder targets as technology advances, all under a strong system of transparency that allows each nation to evaluate the progress of all other nations."[21][22]

Global stocktake

The global stocktake will kick off with a "facilitative dialogue" in 2018. At this convening, parties will evaluate how their NDCs stack up to the nearer-term goal of peaking global emissions and the long-term goal of achieving net zero emissions by the second half of this century.[23]

The implementation of the agreement by all member countries together will be evaluated every 5 years, with the first evaluation in 2023. The outcome is to be used as input for new nationally determined contributions of member states.[24] The stocktake will not be of contributions/achievements of individual countries but a collective analysis of what has been achieved and what more needs to be done.

The stocktake works as part of the Paris Agreement's effort to create a "ratcheting up" of ambition in emissions cuts. Because analysts have agreed that the current NDCs will not limit rising temperatures below 2 degrees Celsius, the global stocktake reconvenes parties to assess how their new NDCs must evolve so that they continually reflect a country's "highest possible ambition".[23]

While ratcheting up the ambition of NDCs is a major aim of the global stocktake, it assesses efforts beyond mitigation. The 5 year reviews will also evaluate adaptation, climate finance provisions, and technology development and transfer.[23]

Structure

The Paris Agreement has a 'bottom up' structure in contrast to most international environmental law treaties which are 'top down', characterised by standards and targets set internationally, for states to implement.[25] Unlike its predecessor, the Kyoto Protocol, which sets commitment targets that have legal force, the Paris Agreement, with its emphasis on consensus-building, allows for voluntary and nationally determined targets.[26] The specific climate goals are thus politically encouraged, rather than legally bound. Only the processes governing the reporting and review of these goals are mandated under international law. This structure is especially notable for the United States—because there are no legal mitigation or finance targets, the agreement is considered an "executive agreement rather than a treaty". Because the UNFCCC treaty of 1992 received the consent of the Senate, this new agreement does not require further legislation from Congress for it to take effect.[26]

Another key difference between the Paris Agreement and the Kyoto Protocol is their scopes. While the Kyoto Protocol differentiated between Annex-1 and non-Annex-1 countries, this bifurcation is blurred in the Paris Agreement, as all parties will be required to submit emissions reductions plans.[27] While the Paris Agreement still emphasizes the principle of "Common but Differentiated Responsibility and Respective Capabilities"—the acknowledgement that different nations have different capacities and duties to climate action—it does not provide a specific division between developed and developing nations.[27]

Mitigation provisions and carbon markets

Article 6 has been flagged as containing some of the key provisions of the Paris Agreement.[28] Broadly, it outlines the cooperative approaches that parties can take in achieving their nationally determined carbon emissions reductions. In doing so, it helps establish the Paris Agreement as a framework for a global carbon market.[29]

Linkage of trading systems and international transfer of mitigation outcomes (ITMOs)

Paragraphs 6.2 and 6.3 establish a framework to govern the international transfer of mitigation outcomes (ITMOs). The Agreement recognizes the rights of Parties to use emissions reductions outside of their own jurisdiction toward their NDC, in a system of carbon accounting and trading.[29]

This provision requires the "linkage" of various carbon emissions trading systems—because measured emissions reductions must avoid "double counting", transferred mitigation outcomes must be recorded as a gain of emission units for one party and a reduction of emission units for the other.[28] Because the NDCs, and domestic carbon trading schemes, are heterogeneous, the ITMOs will provide a format for global linkage under the auspices of the UNFCCC.[30] The provision thus also creates a pressure for countries to adopt emissions management systems—if a country wants to use more cost-effective cooperative approaches to achieve their NDCs, they will need to monitor carbon units for their economies.[31]

Sustainable Development Mechanism

Paragraphs 6.4-6.7 establish a mechanism "to contribute to the mitigation of greenhouse gases and support sustainable development".[32] Though there is no specific name for the mechanism as yet, many Parties and observers have informally coalesced around the name "Sustainable Development Mechanism" or "SDM".[33][34] The SDM is considered to be the successor to the Clean Development Mechanism, a flexible mechanism under the Kyoto Protocol, by which parties could collaboratively pursue emissions reductions for their Intended Nationally Determined Contributions. The Sustainable Development Mechanism lays the framework for the future of the Clean Development Mechanism post-Kyoto (in 2020).

In its basic aim, the SDM will largely resemble the Clean Development Mechanism, with the dual mission to 1. contribute to global GHG emissions reductions and 2. support sustainable development.[35] Though the structure and processes governing the SDM are not yet determined, certain similarities and differences from the Clean Development Mechanism can already be seen. Notably, the SDM, unlike the Clean Development Mechanism, will be available to all parties as opposed to only Annex-1 parties, making it much wider in scope.[36]

Since the Kyoto Protocol went into force, the Clean Development Mechanism has been criticized for failing to produce either meaningful emissions reductions or sustainable development benefits in most instances.[37] It has also suffered from the low price of Certified Emissions Reductions (CERs), creating less demand for projects. These criticisms have motivated the recommendations of various stakeholders, who have provided through working groups and reports, new elements they hope to see in SDM that will bolster its success.[30] The specifics of the governance structure, project proposal modalities, and overall design are expected to come during the next[when?] Conference of the Parties in Marrakesh.

Adaptation provisions

Adaptation issues garnered more focus in the formation of the Paris Agreement. Collective, long-term adaptation goals are included in the Agreement, and countries must report on their adaptation actions, making adaptation a parallel component of the agreement with mitigation.[38] The adaptation goals focus on enhancing adaptive capacity, increasing resilience, and limiting vulnerability.[39]

Ensuring finance

At the Paris Conference in 2015 where the Agreement was negotiated, the developed countries reaffirmed the commitment to mobilize $100 billion a year in climate finance by 2020, and agreed to continue mobilizing finance at the level of $100 billion a year until 2025.[40] The commitment refers to the pre-existing plan to provide US$100 billion a year in aid to developing countries for actions on climate change adaptation and mitigation.[41]

Though both mitigation and adaptation require increased climate financing, adaptation has typically received lower levels of support and has mobilised less action from the private sector.[38] A 2014 report by the OECD found that just 16 percent of global finance was directed toward climate adaptation in 2014.[42] The Paris Agreement called for a balance of climate finance between adaptation and mitigation, and specifically underscoring the need to increase adaptation support for parties most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, including Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States. The agreement also reminds parties of the importance of public grants, because adaptation measures receive less investment from the public sector.[38] John Kerry, as Secretary of State, announced that the U.S. would double its grant-based adaptation finance by 2020.[26]

Some specific outcomes of the elevated attention to adaptation financing in Paris include the G7 countries' announcement to provide US $420 million for Climate Risk Insurance, and the launching of a Climate Risk and Early Warning Systems (CREWS) Initiative.[43] In early March 2016, the Obama administration gave a $500 million grant to the "Green Climate Fund" as "the first chunk of a $3 billion commitment made at the Paris climate talks."[44][45][46] So far, the Green Climate Fund has now received over $10 billion in pledges. Notably, the pledges come from developed nations like France, the US, and Japan, but also from developing countries such as Mexico, Indonesia, and Vietnam.[26]

Loss and damage

A new issue that emerged[citation needed] as a focal point in the Paris negotiations rose from the fact that many of the worst effects of climate change will be too severe or come too quickly to be avoided by adaptation measures. The Paris Agreement specifically acknowledges the need to address loss and damage of this kind, and aims to find appropriate responses.[47] It specifies that loss and damage can take various forms—both as immediate impacts from extreme weather events, and slow onset impacts, such as the loss of land to sea-level rise for low-lying islands.[26]

The push to address loss and damage as a distinct issue in the Paris Agreement came from the Alliance of Small Island States and the Least Developed Countries, whose economies and livelihoods are most vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate change.[26] Developed countries, however, worried that classifying the issue as one separate and beyond adaptation measures would create yet another climate finance provision, or might imply legal liability for catastrophic climate events.

In the end, all parties acknowledged the need for "averting, minimizing, and addressing loss and damage" but notably, any mention of compensation or liability is excluded.[8] The agreement also adopts the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage, an institution that will attempt to address questions about how to classify, address, and share responsibility for loss and damage.[47]

Enhanced transparency framework

While each Party's NDC is not legally binding, the Parties are legally bound to have their progress tracked by technical expert review to assess achievement toward the NDC, and to determine ways to strengthen ambition.[48] Article 13 of the Paris Agreement articulates an "enhanced transparency framework for action and support" that establishes harmonized monitoring, reporting, and verification (MRV) requirements. Thus, both developed and developing nations must report every two years on their mitigation efforts, and all parties will be subject to both technical and peer review.[48]

Flexibility mechanisms

While the enhanced transparency framework is universal, along with the global stocktaking to occur every 5 years, the framework is meant to provide "built-in flexibility" to distinguish between developed and developing countries' capacities. In conjunction with this, the Paris Agreement has provisions for an enhanced framework for capacity building.[49] The agreement recognizes the varying circumstances of some countries, and specifically notes that the technical expert review for each country consider that country's specific capacity for reporting.[49] The agreement also develops a Capacity-Building Initiative for Transparency to assist developing countries in building the necessary institutions and processes for complying with the transparency framework.[49]

There are several ways in which flexibility mechanisms can be incorporated into the enhanced transparency framework. The scope, level of detail, or frequency of reporting may all be adjusted and tiered based on a country's capacity. The requirement for in-country technical reviews could be lifted for some less developed or small island developing countries. Ways to assess capacity include financial and human resources in a country necessary for NDC review.[49]

Adoption

The Paris Agreement was opened for signature on 22 April 2016 (Earth Day) at a ceremony in New York.[50] After several European Union states ratified the agreement in October 2016, there were enough countries that had ratified the agreement that produce enough of the world's greenhouse gases for the agreement to enter into force.[51] The agreement went into effect on 4 November 2016.[2]

Negotiations

Within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, legal instruments may be adopted to reach the goals of the convention. For the period from 2008 to 2012, greenhouse gas reduction measures were agreed in the Kyoto Protocol in 1997. The scope of the protocol was extended until 2020 with the Doha Amendment to that protocol in 2012.[52]

During the 2011 United Nations Climate Change Conference, the Durban Platform (and the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action) was established with the aim to negotiate a legal instrument governing climate change mitigation measures from 2020. The resulting agreement was to be adopted in 2015.[53]

Adoption

 
Heads of delegations at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris.

At the conclusion of COP 21 (the 21st meeting of the Conference of the Parties, which guides the Conference), on 12 December 2015, the final wording of the Paris Agreement was adopted by consensus by all of the 195 UNFCCC participating member states and the European Union[3] to reduce emissions as part of the method for reducing greenhouse gas. In the 12 page Agreement,[46] the members promised to reduce their carbon output "as soon as possible" and to do their best to keep global warming "to well below 2 degrees C" [3.6 degrees F].[54]

Signature and entry into force

 
Signing by John Kerry in United Nations General Assembly Hall for the United States

The Paris Agreement was open for signature by States and regional economic integration organizations that are Parties to the UNFCCC (the Convention) from 22 April 2016 to 21 April 2017 at the UN Headquarters in New York.[55]

The agreement stated that it would enter into force (and thus become fully effective) only if 55 countries that produce at least 55% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions (according to a list produced in 2015)[56] ratify, accept, approve or accede to the agreement.[57][58] On 1 April 2016, the United States and China, which together represent almost 40% of global emissions, issued a joint statement confirming that both countries would sign the Paris Climate Agreement.[59][60] 175 Parties (174 states and the European Union) signed the agreement on the first date it was open for signature.[50][61] On the same day, more than 20 countries issued a statement of their intent to join as soon as possible with a view to joining in 2016. With ratification by the European Union, the Agreement obtained enough parties to enter into effect as of 4 November 2016.

European Union and its member states

Both the EU and its member states are individually responsible for ratifying the Paris Agreement. A strong preference was reported that the EU and its 28 member states deposit their instruments of ratification at the same time to ensure that neither the EU nor its member states engage themselves to fulfilling obligations that strictly belong to the other,[62] and there were fears that disagreement over each individual member state's share of the EU-wide reduction target, as well as Britain's vote to leave the EU might delay the Paris pact.[63] However, the European Parliament approved ratification of the Paris Agreement on 4 October 2016,[51] and the EU deposited its instruments of ratification on 5 October 2016, along with several individual EU member states.[63]

Parties and signatories

As of December 2016, 194 states and the European Union have signed the Agreement. 151 of those parties have ratified or acceded to the Agreement, most notably China, the United States (who is intent on leaving) and India, the countries with three of the four largest greenhouse gas emissions of the signatories' total (about 42% together).[1][64][65]

Party or signatory[1] Percentage of greenhouse
gases for ratification[56]
Date of signature Date of deposit of instruments
of ratification or accession
Date when agreement
enters into force
  Afghanistan 0.05% 22 April 2016 15 February 2017 17 March 2017
  Albania 0.02% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Algeria 0.30% 22 April 2016 20 October 2016 19 November 2016
  Andorra 0.00% 22 April 2016 24 March 2017 23 April 2017
  Angola 0.17% 22 April 2016
  Antigua and Barbuda 0.00% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Argentina 0.89% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Armenia 0.02% 20 September 2016 23 March 2017 22 April 2017
  Australia 1.46% 22 April 2016 9 November 2016 9 December 2016
  Austria 0.21% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Azerbaijan 0.13% 22 April 2016 9 January 2017 8 February 2017
  Bahamas, The 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 August 2016 4 November 2016
  Bahrain 0.06% 22 April 2016 23 December 2016 22 January 2017
  Bangladesh 0.27% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Barbados 0.01% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Belarus 0.24% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Belgium 0.32% 22 April 2016 6 April 2017 6 May 2017
  Belize 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Benin 0.02% 22 April 2016 31 October 2016 30 November 2016
  Bhutan 0.00% 22 April 2016
  Bolivia 0.12% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Bosnia and Herzegovina 0.08% 22 April 2016 16 March 2017 15 April 2017
  Botswana 0.02% 22 April 2016 11 November 2016 11 December 2016
  Brazil 2.48% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Brunei N/A[a] 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Bulgaria 0.15% 22 April 2016 29 November 2016 29 December 2016
  Burkina Faso 0.06% 22 April 2016 11 November 2016 11 December 2016
  Burundi 0.07% 22 April 2016
  Cambodia 0.03% 22 April 2016 6 February 2017 8 March 2017
  Cameroon 0.45% 22 April 2016 29 July 2016 4 November 2016
  Canada 1.95% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Cape Verde 0.00% 22 April 2016
  Central African Republic 0.01% 22 April 2016 11 October 2016 10 November 2016
  Chad 0.06% 22 April 2016 12 January 2017 11 February 2017
  Chile[66] 0.25% 20 September 2016 10 February 2017 12 March 2017
  China[b] 20.09% 22 April 2016 3 September 2016[64] 4 November 2016
  Colombia 0.41% 22 April 2016
  Comoros 0.00% 22 April 2016 23 November 2016 23 December 2016
  Congo, Democratic Republic of the 0.06% 22 April 2016
  Congo, Republic of the 0.01% 22 April 2016 21 April 2017 21 May 2017
  Cook Islands 0.00% 24 June 2016 1 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Costa Rica 0.03% 22 April 2016 13 October 2016 12 November 2016
  Côte d'Ivoire 0.73% 22 April 2016 25 October 2016 24 November 2016
  Croatia 0.07% 22 April 2016 24 May 2017 23 June 2017
  Cuba 0.10% 22 April 2016 28 December 2016 27 January 2017
  Cyprus 0.02% 22 April 2016 4 January 2017 3 February 2017
  Czech Republic 0.34% 22 April 2016
  Denmark[67] 0.15% 22 April 2016 1 November 2016 1 December 2016
  Djibouti 0.00% 22 April 2016 11 November 2016 11 December 2016
  Dominica 0.00% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Dominican Republic 0.07% 22 April 2016
  East Timor 0.00% 22 April 2016
  Ecuador 0.67% 26 July 2016
  Egypt 0.52% 22 April 2016
  El Salvador 0.03% 22 April 2016 27 March 2017 26 April 2017
  Equatorial Guinea N/A[a] 22 April 2016
  Eritrea 0.01% 22 April 2016
  Estonia 0.06% 22 April 2016 4 November 2016 4 December 2016
  Ethiopia 0.13% 22 April 2016 9 March 2017 8 April 2017
  European Union N/A[c] 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Fiji 0.01% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Finland 0.17% 22 April 2016 14 November 2016 14 December 2016
  France 1.34% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Gabon 0.02% 22 April 2016 2 November 2016 2 December 2016
  Gambia, The 0.05% 26 April 2016 7 November 2016 7 December 2016
  Georgia 0.03% 22 April 2016 8 May 2017 7 June 2017
  Germany 2.56% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Ghana 0.09% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Greece 0.28% 22 April 2016 14 October 2016 13 November 2016
  Grenada 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Guatemala 0.04% 22 April 2016 25 January 2017 24 February 2017
  Guinea 0.01% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Guinea-Bissau 0.02% 22 April 2016
  Guyana 0.01% 22 April 2016 20 May 2016 4 November 2016
  Haiti 0.02% 22 April 2016
  Honduras 0.03% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Hungary 0.15% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Iceland 0.01% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  India 4.10% 22 April 2016 2 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Indonesia 1.49% 22 April 2016 31 October 2016 30 November 2016
  Iran 1.30% 22 April 2016
  Iraq 0.20% 8 December 2016
  Ireland 0.16% 22 April 2016 4 November 2016 4 December 2016
  Israel 0.20% 22 April 2016 22 November 2016 22 December 2016
  Italy 1.18% 22 April 2016 11 November 2016 11 December 2016
  Jamaica 0.04% 22 April 2016 10 April 2017 10 May 2017
  Japan 3.79% 22 April 2016 8 November 2016 8 December 2016
  Jordan 0.07% 22 April 2016 4 November 2016 4 December 2016
  Kazakhstan 0.84% 2 August 2016 6 December 2016 5 January 2017
  Kenya 0.06% 22 April 2016 28 December 2016 27 January 2017
  Kiribati 0.00% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  North Korea 0.23% 22 April 2016 1 August 2016 4 November 2016
  South Korea 1.85% 22 April 2016 3 November 2016 3 December 2016
  Kuwait 0.09% 22 April 2016
  Kyrgyzstan 0.03% 21 September 2016
  Laos 0.02% 22 April 2016 7 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Latvia 0.03% 22 April 2016 16 March 2017 15 April 2017
  Lebanon 0.07% 22 April 2016
  Lesotho 0.01% 22 April 2016 20 January 2017 19 February 2017
  Liberia 0.02% 22 April 2016
  Libya N/A[a] 22 April 2016
  Liechtenstein 0.00% 22 April 2016
  Lithuania 0.05% 22 April 2016 2 February 2017 4 March 2017
  Luxembourg 0.03% 22 April 2016 4 November 2016 4 December 2016
  Macedonia, Republic of 0.03% 22 April 2016
  Madagascar 0.08% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Malawi 0.07% 20 September 2016
  Malaysia 0.52% 22 April 2016 16 November 2016 16 December 2016
  Maldives 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Mali 0.03% 22 April 2016 23 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Malta 0.01% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Marshall Islands 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Mauritania 0.02% 22 April 2016 27 February 2017 29 March 2017
  Mauritius 0.01% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Mexico 1.70% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Micronesia 0.00% 22 April 2016 15 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Moldova 0.04% 21 September 2016 20 June 2017 20 July 2017
  Monaco 0.00% 22 April 2016 24 October 2016 23 November 2016
  Mongolia 0.05% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Montenegro 0.01% 22 April 2016
  Morocco 0.16% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Mozambique 0.02% 22 April 2016
  Myanmar 0.10% 22 April 2016
  Namibia 0.01% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Nauru 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
    Nepal 0.07% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Netherlands 0.53% 22 April 2016
  New Zealand[68] 0.22% 22 April 2016 4 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Niger 0.04% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Nigeria 0.57% 22 September 2016 16 May 2017 15 June 2017
  Niue 0.01% 28 October 2016 28 October 2016 27 November 2016
  Norway 0.14% 22 April 2016 20 June 2016 4 November 2016
  Oman 0.06% 22 April 2016
  Pakistan 0.43% 22 April 2016 10 November 2016 10 December 2016
  Palau 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Palestine N/A[d] 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Panama 0.03% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Papua New Guinea 0.01% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Paraguay 0.06% 22 April 2016 14 October 2016 13 November 2016
  Peru 0.22% 22 April 2016 25 July 2016 4 November 2016
  Philippines 0.34% 22 April 2016 23 March 2017 22 April 2017
  Poland 1.06% 22 April 2016 7 October 2016 6 November 2016
  Portugal 0.18% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Qatar 0.17% 22 April 2016 23 June 2017 23 July 2017
  Romania 0.30% 22 April 2016 1 June 2017 1 July 2017
  Russia 7.53% 22 April 2016
  Rwanda 0.02% 22 April 2016 6 October 2016 5 November 2016
  Saint Kitts and Nevis 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Saint Lucia 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 0.00% 22 April 2016 29 June 2016 4 November 2016
  Samoa 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  San Marino 0.00% 22 April 2016
  São Tomé and Príncipe 0.00% 22 April 2016 2 November 2016 2 December 2016
  Saudi Arabia 0.80% 3 November 2016 3 November 2016 3 December 2016
  Senegal 0.05% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Serbia 0.18% 22 April 2016
  Seychelles 0.00% 25 April 2016 29 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Sierra Leone 0.98%† 22 September 2016 1 November 2016 1 December 2016
  Singapore 0.13% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Slovakia 0.12% 22 April 2016 5 October 2016 4 November 2016
  Slovenia 0.05% 22 April 2016 16 December 2016 15 January 2017
  Solomon Islands 0.00% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Somalia N/A[a] 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  South Africa 1.46% 22 April 2016 1 November 2016 1 December 2016
  South Sudan N/A[a] 22 April 2016
  Spain 0.87% 22 April 2016 12 January 2017 11 February 2017
  Sri Lanka 0.05% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Sudan 0.18% 22 April 2016
  Suriname 0.01% 22 April 2016
  Swaziland 0.05% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Sweden 0.15% 22 April 2016 13 October 2016 12 November 2016
   Switzerland 0.14% 22 April 2016
  Tajikistan 0.02% 22 April 2016 22 March 2017 21 April 2017
  Tanzania 0.11% 22 April 2016
  Thailand 0.64% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Togo 0.02% 19 September 2016 28 June 2017 28 July 2017
  Tonga 0.00% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Trinidad and Tobago 0.04% 22 April 2016
  Tunisia 0.11% 22 April 2016 10 February 2017 12 March 2017
  Turkey 1.24% 22 April 2016
  Turkmenistan 0.20% 23 September 2016 20 October 2016 19 November 2016
  Tuvalu 0.00% 22 April 2016 22 April 2016 4 November 2016
  Uganda 0.07% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Ukraine 1.04% 22 April 2016 19 September 2016 4 November 2016
  United Arab Emirates 0.53% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  United Kingdom 1.55% 22 April 2016 18 November 2016 18 December 2016
  United States[e] 17.89% 22 April 2016 3 September 2016[64] 4 November 2016
  Uruguay 0.05% 22 April 2016 19 October 2016 18 November 2016
  Uzbekistan 0.54% 19 April 2017
  Vanuatu 0.00% 22 April 2016 21 September 2016 4 November 2016
  Venezuela 0.52% 22 April 2016
  Vietnam 0.72% 22 April 2016 3 November 2016 3 December 2016
  Yemen 0.07% 23 September 2016
  Zambia 0.04% 20 September 2016 9 December 2016 8 January 2017
  Zimbabwe 0.18% 22 April 2016
Total 99.75% 195 151[1] (84.12% of global emissions[56])

† Though corresponding with the source the provided number for Sierra Leone's emissions is incorrect. According to World Bank data, the correct 2000 emissions for Sierra Leone is 14,763 kt CO2-equivalents (not 365,107 kt), or 0.04% of the world total (not 0.98%).[70]

Non-signatories

The following UNFCCC member states are entitled to sign the Paris Agreement but have not done so. The Holy See is an observer state and can sign the Paris Agreement if it accedes to full membership.

Party or signatory Percentage of greenhouse
gases for ratification[56]
UNFCCC
membership
Notes
  Holy See N/A[d] Observer state The Holy See cannot sign the Paris Agreement until it becomes a full member of the UNFCCC. In 2015, Bernardito Auza stated that the Holy See intended to join the UNFCCC in order to sign the Paris Agreement.[71]
  Nicaragua 0.03% Member state In 2015, Nicaraguan envoy Paul Oquist criticized the Paris Agreement for not punishing countries who did not follow it. He stated Nicaragua will continue countering climate change on its own, with plans being that the country will be "90 percent renewable" by 2020.[72]
  Syria 0.21% Member state Syria was not expected to sign the Paris Agreement in 2015 due to the still ongoing Syrian Civil War.[72]
Total 0.24% 3

Withdrawal from Agreement

Article 28 of the agreement enables parties to withdraw from the agreement after sending withdrawal notifications to the depositary three years after the agreement goes into force in that country, and the withdrawal is effective one year after the depositary is notified.

On 1 June 2017, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the agreement.[73] In accordance with Article 28, as the agreement entered into force in the United States on 4 November 2016, the earliest possible effective withdrawal date for the United States is 4 November 2020.

In the agreement no provisions for non compliance are stated.

Concerns

Not enough

According to UNEP the emission cut targets in November 2016 will result in temperature rise by 3 °C above preindustrial levels, far above the 2 °C of the Paris climate agreement.[74] Twenty years after the Kyoto Protocol fossil fuels are still our primary energy source and consumption continues to grow.[75]

According to a study published in Nature in June 2016, current country pledges are insufficient to meet the Paris Agreement goal of keeping global temperature rise "well below 2 °C".[76][77]

Lack of binding enforcement mechanism

Although the agreement was lauded by many, including French President François Hollande and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon,[58] criticism has also surfaced. For example, James Hansen, a former NASA scientist and a climate change expert, voiced anger that most of the agreement consists of "promises" or aims and not firm commitments.[78]

Institutional asset owners associations and think-tanks have also observed that the stated objectives of the Paris Agreement are implicitly "predicated upon an assumption – that member states of the United Nations, including high polluters such as China, the US, India, Japan, Brazil, Canada, Russia, Indonesia and Australia, which generate more than half the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, will somehow drive down their carbon pollution voluntarily and assiduously without any binding enforcement mechanism to measure and control CO2 emissions at any level from factory to state, and without any specific penalty gradation or fiscal pressure (for example a carbon tax) to discourage bad behaviour."[79]

Limited government role

World Pensions Council Director-General Nicolas J. Firzli insisted that, in reality, the role of government signatories would be limited in most instances, and that private sector asset owners would take the lead by expanding massively their investment in "clean tech, low-carbon ventures" and innovative companies which pursue socially and environmentally sound corporate strategies, regardless of whether the new US administration or other governments renege on their commitments [80]

The inevitable nature of the secular trend towards divestment from polluting fossil fuels was reconfirmed at 6th annual World Pensions Forum held in Greenwich in February 2017, with all institutional investors in attendance, including U.S. and Canadian pension funds, agreeing that climate-change conscious, responsible investments "constitute a [real, ] rising trend: [they’re] here to stay".[81]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d e Emissions of parties to the UNFCCC that had not yet submitted their first national communication to the UNFCCC secretariat with an emissions inventory at the time of adoption of the Paris Agreement were not included in the figure for entry into force of the Agreement.[56]
  2. ^ Including Hong Kong and Macau.
  3. ^ The emissions of the European Union are accounted for in the total of its individual member states.
  4. ^ a b Emissions of states that were not a party to the UNFCCC at the time of adoption of the Paris Agreement,[69] which were thus not permitted to sign the Agreement, were not included in the totals for entry into force for the Agreement.
  5. ^ Announced intention to withdraw.

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External links