The Paris Climate Agreement Key Points

While the enhanced transparency framework is universal and the global inventory is carried out every five years, the framework must provide “integrated flexibility” to distinguish the capabilities of developed and developing countries. In this context, the Paris Agreement contains provisions to improve the capacity-building framework. [58] The agreement recognizes the different circumstances of some countries and notes, in particular, that the technical review of experts for each country takes into account the specific capacity of that country to report. [58] The agreement also develops a capacity-building initiative for transparency to help developing countries put in place the necessary institutions and procedures to comply with the transparency framework. [58] Apart from formal intergovernmental negotiations, countries, cities and regions, businesses and civil society members around the world are taking steps to accelerate cooperation on climate change in support of the Paris Agreement as part of the Global Climate Agenda. It will also enable the contracting parties to gradually strengthen their contributions to the fight against climate change in order to achieve the long-term objectives of the agreement. 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. Countries should also review their commitments by 2020 and present new targets every five years to further reduce emissions. They must participate in a “comprehensive state of affairs” to measure collective efforts in order to achieve the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement.

In the meantime, developed countries must also assess the financial assistance they will provide to developing countries to help them reduce their emissions and adapt to the effects of climate change. The agreement officially entered into force on 4 November 2016, a few days before COP22, and was ratified by 169 countries (including the European Union 28), which account for 87.75% of emissions. The initial commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol was extended until 2012. This year, at COP18 in Doha, Qatar, delegates agreed to extend the agreement until 2020 (without some industrialized countries withdrawing). They also reaffirmed their commitment made at COP17 in Durban, South Africa, in 2011, to create a new global climate treaty by 2015 that would require all major emitters not included in the Kyoto Protocol, such as China, India and the United States, to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The new treaty – which was to become the Paris Agreement – was to completely replace the Kyoto Protocol by 2020. However, the Paris agreement came into force earlier than expected in November 2016.