The Paris Climate Agreement: How Many Countries Are Involved?
The Paris Climate Agreement, also known as the Paris Agreement or COP21, is a global pact signed by 197 countries in December 2015. The agreement aims to limit global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius. It is considered one of the most significant international efforts to address climate change.
The agreement was adopted during the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) held in Paris, France. It came into force on November 4, 2016, after being ratified by at least 55 countries representing at least 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
As of August 2021, 191 out of 197 countries have ratified the agreement, accounting for over 80% of global greenhouse gas emissions. The countries that have not ratified the agreement are Iran, Iraq, Eritrea, South Sudan, Libya, and Turkey. However, some of these countries have signed the agreement and have pledged to ratify it in the future.
The Paris Agreement requires countries to set and regularly review their own climate targets, also known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), every five years. These targets should be ambitious enough to achieve the goal of limiting global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius. The NDCs should also be transparent and accountable, with reporting requirements to the UNFCCC.
The Paris Agreement has been praised for its inclusiveness, as it brings together developed and developing countries to tackle climate change together. However, it has also been criticized for not being ambitious enough and lacking enforcement mechanisms. The recent United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, aimed to address some of these issues and increase global climate ambition.
In conclusion, the Paris Climate Agreement involves 191 countries as of August 2021, accounting for over 80% of global greenhouse gas emissions. The agreement aims to limit global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius and requires countries to set and regularly review their own climate targets. While it has been praised for its inclusiveness, it has also faced criticism for not being ambitious enough and lacking enforcement mechanisms.