More countries officially signed Paris Agreement
The Paris Agreement was hammered out in France in December 2015.
Over 165 world leaders and delegates signed the agreement negotiated last year in France aimed at slowing global warming and helping the poorer nations most affected by it.
The signing ceremony is the second in three steps required to make the deal a reality. Following the negotiations reached in December in Paris and today’s signing, now nations must ratify the agreement in their national parliaments.
"We are breaking records in this Chamber … and that is good news," U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in opening remarks. "But records are also being broken outside; record global temperatures. Record ice loss. Record carbon levels in the atmosphere. We are in a race against time."
The agreement will officially come into force when 55 countries – representing 55 percent of global emissions – have signed and ratified the deal. At least 15 countries were expected to ratify it Friday alone. Other countries have one year to get the deal done at home.
The Paris Agreement calls for “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.”
To achieve that goal, countries should “reach global peaking of greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible, recognizing that peaking will take longer for developing country parties, and to undertake rapid reductions thereafter.”
There will be a review process every five years to take stock and increase ambition over time. The progress of countries in their commitments will be tracked to ensure transparency and accountability. The need for all countries to adapt to climate change by preparing and reinforcing their resilience is also acknowledged.
In terms of solidarity, the European Union and other developed countries commit to continue providing climate finance to developing countries.
In March 2016, the European Council underlined that the EU and its member states need to ratify the Paris Agreement as soon as possible and on time so as to be parties as from the date of entry into force.