Status of the Paris Agreement

The Paris Agreement, which was adopted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in December 2015, aims to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, and pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The agreement also seeks to strengthen the ability of countries to deal with the impacts of climate change.

As of 2021, 197 countries have signed the Paris Agreement, with 189 having ratified it. The United States, which was one of the early signatories of the agreement, withdrew from it under the Trump administration in 2017. However, the Biden administration has re-joined the agreement, and on February 19, 2021, the United States officially became a party to the Paris Agreement again.

The current status of the Paris Agreement is that countries are expected to submit revised national climate targets, known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), by the end of 2021. These NDCs will outline each country`s plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change. The revised NDCs are expected to be more ambitious than the previous ones, as the current commitments made by countries are not enough to meet the Paris Agreement`s goals.

In addition to the revised NDCs, the Paris Agreement also requires countries to report on their progress towards meeting their targets through regular transparency and accountability measures. The Katowice Climate Package, which was adopted at the UN Climate Change Conference in December 2018, established the rules for implementing the Paris Agreement, including guidelines for reporting and review.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the implementation of the Paris Agreement, as many countries have had to redirect their resources towards addressing the immediate health and economic impacts of the pandemic. However, the pandemic has also highlighted the importance of addressing systemic risks such as climate change, and many countries have expressed their commitment to building back better by pursuing green recovery plans.

In conclusion, the Paris Agreement remains a crucial international framework for addressing the global climate crisis. The revised NDCs and transparency measures expected in 2021 will be important steps towards achieving the agreement`s goals, but much more will need to be done to limit the impacts of climate change and ensure a sustainable future for all.