What is the Paris Agreement?

The Paris Climate Agreement of 2015 marks a historic milestone in international climate policy. Signed at the 21st UN Climate Change Conference (COP21), it sets the ambitious goal of limiting global warming to well below 2 °C, and if possible to 1.5 °C compared to pre-industrial levels, in order to prevent the most devastating consequences of climate change.

What is the goal of the Paris Climate Agreement?

The main objective of the agreement is to keep the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and to make efforts to limit warming to 1.5 °C. This requires a rapid reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and the achievement of greenhouse gas neutrality in the second half of this century. This requires a rapid reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and the achievement of greenhouse gas neutrality in the second half of this century.

Another important goal is to improve the adaptability and resilience of countries to the adverse effects of climate change and to promote climate-resilient development.

The agreement underlines the need to align financial flows with long-term climate protection goals and supports the mobilization of necessary financial resources for climate protection measures.

What are Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs)?

The Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) are at the heart of the Paris Agreement by allowing each Party to define individual greenhouse gas emission reduction targets and adaptation plans to the impacts of climate change. In addition, the NDCs are a dynamic mechanism: they are to be reviewed and strengthened every five years in order to intensify global efforts to limit the temperature increase in line with the long-term goals of the agreement.

Which countries have signed the Paris Climate Agreement?

To date, 198 parties, consisting of 197 countries and the European Union, have signed the Paris Climate Agreement. This includes all countries in the world recognized under international law, with Nicaragua and Syria being the last to join the agreement in 2017. Of these, 195 parties have also ratified the agreement, with the exception of Libya, Iran and Yemen.

Significance of the Paris Climate Agreement for companies

Companies are called upon to play their part in achieving the Paris climate targets by reducing their emissions and promoting sustainable business models. This not only offers the chance to take responsibility for climate protection, but also opens up new opportunities for innovation and sustainable growth.

Difference between the Paris Climate Protection Act and the Kyoto Protocol

The Paris Agreement replaces the Kyoto Protocol and introduces important innovations: It integrates all countries - developed and developing - into a common framework and relies on an inclusive, flexible approach to climate protection policy that takes into account the different national circumstances.