United Nations Paris Agreement

The Kyoto Protocol, a pioneering environmental treaty adopted at COP3 in Japan in 1997, is the first time nations have agreed on country-by-country emission reduction targets. The protocol, which only came into force in 2005, set binding emission reduction targets only for industrialized countries, based on the fact that they are responsible for most of the world`s high greenhouse gas emissions. The United States first signed the agreement, but never ratified it; President George W. Bush argued that the agreement would hurt the U.S. economy because developing countries such as China and India would not be included. In the absence of the participation of these three countries, the effectiveness of the treaty was limited, as its objectives covered only a small fraction of total global emissions. To contribute to the goals of the agreement, countries presented comprehensive national climate change plans (national fixed contributions, NDC). These are not yet sufficient to meet the agreed temperature targets, but the agreement points to the way forward for further measures. Implementation of the agreement by all Member States will be evaluated every five years, with the first evaluation in 2023.

The result will be used as an input for new national contributions from Member States. [30] The inventory will not be national contributions/achievements, but a collective analysis of what has been achieved and what remains to be done. A couple of studies in Nature have stated that from 2017, none of the major industrialized countries implemented the strategies they had planned and did not meet their emission reduction targets,[92] and even if they had, the sum of all accession commitments (from 2016) would not maintain the increase in global temperature “well below 2oC”. [93] [94] The NDC partnership was launched at COP22 in Marrakech to improve cooperation so that countries have access to the technical knowledge and financial assistance they need to achieve major climate and sustainable development goals. The NDC partnership is led by a steering committee made up of industrialized and developing countries and international institutions and is supported by a support unit organized by the World Resources Institute and based in Washington, D.C. and Bonn, Germany. The NDC partnership is co-chaired by the governments of Costa Rica and the Netherlands and has 93 Member States, 21 institutional partners and 10 associate members. Countries must, among other things, report on their greenhouse gas inventories and their progress against their targets, so that external experts can assess their success.