The NRDC is working to make the Global Climate Action Summit a success by inspiring more ambitious commitments to the historic 2015 agreement and increased initiatives to reduce pollution. The Paris Agreement is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that addresses the mitigation, adaptation and financing of greenhouse gas emissions and was signed in 2016. The wording of the agreement was negotiated by representatives of 196 States Parties at the 21st Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC at Le Bourget, near Paris, France, and adopted by consensus on 12 December 2015.   By February 2020, the 196 members of the UNFCCC had signed the agreement and 189 had become parties to the agreement.  Of the seven countries that are not parties to the law, the only major emitters are Iran and Turkey. The Kyoto Protocol, a landmark environmental agreement adopted at COP3 in Japan in 1997, is the first time that countries have agreed on country-specific emission reduction targets that are legally mandated. The protocol, which only entered into force in 2005, set binding emission reduction targets only for developed countries, based on the assumption that they were responsible for most of the Earth`s high greenhouse gas emissions. The United States first signed the agreement, but never ratified it; President George W. Bush argued that the deal would hurt the U.S. economy because it would not include developing countries such as China and India. Without the participation of these three countries, the effectiveness of the treaty has proven to be limited, as its objectives cover only a small fraction of total global emissions. The Paris Agreement includes a set of binding measures to monitor, review and publicly report on progress towards a country`s emission reduction targets.
Rules to improve transparency apply to all countries for a common framework, with arrangements and support provided to countries that are currently unable to strengthen their systems over time. While the Paris Agreement ultimately aims to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius this century, numerous studies evaluating each country`s voluntary commitments in Paris show that the cumulative effect of these emission reductions will not be large enough to keep temperatures below this ceiling. In fact, the targets set by countries should limit the future temperature rise to 2.7 to 3.7 degrees Celsius. Current assessments of countries` performance under their Paris climate goals show that some countries are already failing to meet their commitments. On November 4, 2016, the green-lit Eiffel Tower in Paris celebrates the entry into force of the Paris Agreement, the most ambitious climate protection agreement in history (Photo: Jean-Baptiste Gurliat / Paris City Hall) In November 2020, 194 states and the European Union signed the agreement. 187 states and the EU, which accounts for about 79% of global greenhouse gas emissions, have ratified or acceded to the agreement, including China and India, the countries with the 1st and 3rd largest CO2 emissions among UNFCCC members.    As of November 2020, the United States, Iran and Turkey are the only countries with a share of more than 1% of global emissions and which are not contracting parties […].