Posted on December 20, 2020 in
Written by: David B. Honig
Under the Paris Agreement, each country must define, plan and report regularly on its contribution to the fight against global warming.  There is no mechanism for a country to set an emission target for a specified date, but any target should go beyond the previous targets. The United States formally withdrew from the agreement the day after the 2020 presidential election, although President-elect Joe Biden said America would return to the agreement after his inauguration.  Climate change is a global emergency that transcends national borders. This is an issue that requires coordinated solutions at all levels and international cooperation to help countries move towards a low-carbon economy. The initial commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol was extended until 2012. This year, at COP18 in Doha, Qatar, delegates agreed to extend the agreement until 2020 (without some industrialized countries withdrawing). They also reaffirmed their commitment made at COP17 in Durban, South Africa, in 2011, to create a new global climate treaty by 2015 that would require all major emitters not included in the Kyoto Protocol, such as China, India and the United States, to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The new treaty – which was to become the Paris Agreement – was to completely replace the Kyoto Protocol by 2020. However, the Paris agreement came into force earlier than expected in November 2016. While the Paris Agreement ultimately aims to limit global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius this century, many studies evaluating the voluntary commitments of some countries in Paris show that the cumulative effect of these emission reductions will not be significant enough to keep temperatures below that ceiling.
Indeed, the targets set by the target countries should limit the future increase in temperature between 2.7 and 3.7 degrees Celsius. At the same time, recent assessments of countries` developments in the framework of their climate targets in Paris indicate that some countries are already not meeting their commitments. In 2016, Trump campaigned on a promise to “denounce” the deal, which unfairly weighed on his choice over the United States and gave a passport to poor countries. The United States, second only to China in terms of THE level of pollution of CHARBON, has committed to reduce emissions by 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025. In 1992, President George H.W. Bush joined 107 other heads of state at the Rio Earth Summit in Brazil to adopt a series of environmental agreements, including the UNFCCC framework, which is still in force today.