UNFCCC: Paris Agreement Sails Past Another Milestone

Statement by Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

The UN’s top climate official thanked the 31 governments who today took the number of Parties to the Paris Climate Change Agreement past the key threshold of 55. For the treaty to enter into force, at least 55 Parties covering at least 55 per cent of the global greenhouse gas emissions are required to join the Agreement.

At a special event organized by the UN Secretary-General, Albania, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bangladesh, Belarus, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Dominica, Ghana, Guinea, Honduras, Iceland, Kiribati, Madagascar, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Namibia, Niger, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Senegal, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Thailand, Tonga, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, and Vanuatu deposited their instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession of the Paris agreement.

“As of 21 September, we have 60 Parties who have deposited the relevant instruments, up from the 29 who deposited their instruments over the past few months — this is an extraordinary momentum by nations and a clear signal of their determination to implement Paris now and raise ambition over the decades to come,” she said.

“We now look forward to the final threshold that will, 30 days later, trigger entry into force. Namely, at least 55 per cent of the global greenhouse gas emissions also being covered by Parties who have ratified, accepted, approved or acceded to the Paris Agreement with the UN’s Depositary,” added Ms Espinosa.

“Today we can say with ever more confidence that this historic moment is likely to come very soon, perhaps even by the time governments meet for the next round of climate negotiations in Marrakech, Morocco in November,” she said.

“Here many issues need to be progressed, ranging from the development of a rule book to operationalize the agreement up to building confidence among developing countries that the $100 billion pledged to them by developed nations is truly building,” said Ms Espinosa.

“The adoption, signing and ratification of the Paris Agreement are wonderful news but by no means the end. Securing a climate-safe world and supporting the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals is a multi-decadal effort of constant improvement. But we are out of the blocks and off down the track with enthusiasm, creativity and determination to make the transformation the people of this world expect and need,” she added.

The Paris Agreement was universally adopted in December 2015 and signed by many Parties in early 2016. The first ratifications occurred in April 2016. The UNFCCC secretariat Paris Agreement tracker now records the 60 countries which have ratified accounting for 47.76 percent of global emissions, according to the list provided by Parties to the agreement.

Source: Notification UNFCCC, 21.09.2016