The Paris Climate Agreement, also known as the Paris Agreement, was adopted on December 12, 2015, by 196 countries. The agreement aims to limit the global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius and to pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius. It also aims to strengthen countries` ability to deal with the impacts of climate change and to promote low-carbon, sustainable development.
Since the adoption of the Paris Agreement, there has been progress in its implementation. Here are some of the key developments:
1. Paris Agreement enters into force:
The Paris Agreement entered into force on November 4, 2016, 30 days after the conditions for entry into force were met. The conditions were that at least 55 countries, representing at least 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions, had ratified the agreement. To date, 191 countries have ratified the agreement.
2. Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs):
Under the Paris Agreement, each country is required to submit their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), outlining their plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. NDCs are not legally binding, but countries are encouraged to update and enhance their NDCs every five years. As of August 2021, 191 countries have submitted their NDCs. However, experts have noted that the current NDCs are not sufficient to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) will be held in November 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. This is a critical conference as countries are expected to update their NDCs and to accelerate their efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The conference will also focus on issues such as adaptation, finance, and loss and damage.
4. Renewed commitment:
Several countries, including the United States, have renewed their commitment to the Paris Agreement after a period of uncertainty. The United States, the second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, has rejoined the Paris Agreement under the Biden administration and has set new emissions reduction targets. China, the largest emitter of greenhouse gases, has also set a target to reach peak emissions by 2030 and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.
While progress has been made since the adoption of the Paris Agreement, there is still a long way to go to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The world will need to accelerate its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and countries will need to enhance their NDCs and to implement policies that promote low-carbon, sustainable development. The upcoming COP26 conference will be a critical moment for countries to take bold action to address the climate crisis.