As the world faces the threat of climate change, the Paris Agreement stands as one of the most significant international efforts to mitigate its effects. The agreement, which was adopted on December 12, 2015, by the 196 parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), aims to limit global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The Paris Agreement has been hailed as a historic breakthrough in global efforts to tackle climate change, but its effectiveness relies heavily on the participation of all countries. So, have all countries ratified the Paris Agreement?
As of August 2021, 191 out of the 196 parties to the UNFCCC have ratified the Paris Agreement. This means that over 97% of countries have pledged to take action to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to the global effort to combat climate change. The five countries that have not ratified the agreement include Angola, Eritrea, Iran, Iraq, and Libya.
It`s important to note that even though a country has ratified the Paris Agreement, it does not necessarily mean that they are meeting their commitments. Each country is responsible for submitting their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), which outline their targets and actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. These NDCs are reviewed and updated every five years, and countries are expected to increase their ambition with each update.
Some countries have been criticized for not doing enough to meet their NDCs. For example, the United States, which is the second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases after China, withdrew from the Paris Agreement in 2020 under the Trump administration. However, the country has since rejoined under the Biden administration and has pledged to cut their emissions by 50-52% by 2030 compared to 2005 levels.
In conclusion, while there are still some countries that have not ratified the Paris Agreement, the vast majority of countries have committed to taking action to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. However, the effectiveness of the agreement depends on all countries meeting their commitments and increasing their ambition over time. As individuals, we can also take action to reduce our carbon footprint and support efforts to combat climate change.