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The Paris Agreement is a bridge between today's policies and climate-neutrality before the end of the


Mitigation: reducing emissions

Governments agreed:
a long-term goal of keeping the increase in global average temperature to well below

2C above pre-industrial levels;

to aim to limit the increase to 1.5C, since this would significantly reduce risks and the

impacts of climate change;

on the need for global emissions to peak as soon as possible, recognising that this will

take longer for developing countries;

to undertake rapid reductions thereafter in accordance with the best available science.

Transparency and global stocktake

Governments agreed to:

come together every 5 years to set more ambitious targets as required by science;
report to each other and the public on how well they are doing to implement their targets;
track progress towards the long-term goal through a robust transparency and
accountability system.


Governments agreed to
strengthen societies' ability to deal with the impacts of climate change;
provide continued and enhanced international support for adaptation to



Loss and damage

The agreement also






damageassociated with the adverse effects of climate change;

acknowledges the need to cooperate and enhance


addressing loss

the understanding,



support in different areas such as early warning systems, emergency preparedness and risk

Role of cities, regions and local authorities

The agreement recognises the role of non-Party stakeholders in addressing climate change,
including cities, other subnational authorities, civil society, the private sector and others.

They are invited to

scale up their efforts and support actions to reduce emissions;

build resilience and decrease vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate change;

uphold and promote regional and international cooperation.


The EU and other developed countries will continue to support climate action to reduce
emissions and build resilience to climate change impacts in developing countries.
Other countries are encouraged to provide or continue to provide such support voluntarily.
Developed countries intend to continue their existing collective goal to mobilise USD 100
billion per year by 2020 and extend this until 2025. A new and higher goal will be set for after this

Why does it matter?

The Earths climate is changing. The average global temperature is rising due to an
increase in greenhouse gases (GHG) from human activities. These gases allow the
suns energy in, but prevent heat from escaping. The higher temperatures are
having unprecedented consequences around the world. They cause glaciers to melt
and seal levels to rise. They have brought flooding or droughts to regions which
were previously immune to such extremes11. These abnormal weather conditions
are having an increasing impact on our economies, environment, health and daily
lives. Scientists have pieced together a record of Earths climate, dating back
hundreds of thousands of years, by analysing a number of indirect measures of
climate. This record shows that in general, climate changes prior to the Industrial
Revolution in the 1700s can be explained by natural causes, such as changes in
solar energy, volcanic eruptions, and natural changes in GHG concentrations.
Recent climate changes, however, cannot be explained by natural causes alone,
and research places human activities as the dominant cause of that warming.
Considering that an everbroader range of nonstate actors are taking action to
decarbonise and are turning more resilient to climate change, how can the
European Union (EU) create a more structured and constructive dialogue between
governments, the business community, cities, regions, international organisations,
civil society and academic institutions in order to mobilise exhaustive global action
towards low-carbon and resilient societies? How can EU act locally?

Grouping and actors

Based on the tradition of the United Nations, Parties are organized into five regional groups:

African States,

Asian States,

Eastern European States,

Latin American and the Caribbean States, and

Western European and Other States.

But substantive interests of Parties and several other groupings are more important for climate negotiations. The
major groupings, for substantive and political purposes, are:
Group of 77 and China (G-77 and China) Developing countries generally work through the Group of 77 to establish
common negotiating positions. The G-77 was founded in 1964 in the context of the UN Conference on Trade and
Development (UNCTAD) and now functions throughout the UN system. It has over 130 members. The country
holding the Chair of the G-77 in New York (which rotates every year) often speaks for the G-77 and China as a whole.
However, because the G-77 and China is a diverse group with differing interests on climate change issues, individual
developing countries and groups within the G-77 also intervene in debates.
Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) A coalition of some 43 low-lying and small island countries, most of which
are members of the G-77, that are particularly vulnerable to sea-level rise. AOSIS countries are united by the threat
that climate change poses to their survival and frequently adopt a common stance in negotiations.
Least Developed Countries (LDC) The 50 countries defined as Least Developed Countries by the UN regularly
work together in the wider UN system. They have become increasingly active in the climate change process, often
working together to defend their particular interests, for example with regard to vulnerability and adaptation to climate
European Union (EU) The 27 members of the European Union meet in private to agree on common negotiating
positions. The country that holds the EU Presidency - a position that rotates every six months - then speaks for the
European Union and its 27 member states. As a regional economic integration organization, the European Union
itself can be, and is, a Party to the Convention, but it does not have a separate vote from its members.
The Umbrella Group A loose coalition of non-EU developed countries which formed following the adoption of the
Kyoto Protocol. There is no formal list, but the Group is usually made up of Australia, Canada, Iceland, Japan, New
Zealand, Norway, the Russian Federation, Ukraine and the US. The Umbrella Group evolved from the JUSSCANNZ
(an acronym for Japan, the USA, Switzerland, Canada, Australia, Norway and New Zealand) group, which was active
during the Kyoto Protocol negotiations.
Environmental Integrity Group (EIG) Formed in 2000, the EIG comprises Mexico, the Republic of Korea and
Other groups in the climate change process include the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries
(OPEC), Central Asia, Caucasus, Albania and Moldova (CACAM), the League of Arab States and the Agence
intergouvernementale de la francophonie

Kyoto Protocol

The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate
Change, which commits its Parties by setting internationally binding emission reduction targets.
Recognizing that developed countries are principally responsible for the current high levels of GHG emissions in the
atmosphere as a result of more than 150 years of industrial activity, the Protocol places a heavier burden on
developed nations under the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities."
The Kyoto Protocol was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, on 11 December 1997 and entered into force on 16 February 2005.
The detailed rules for the implementation of the Protocol were adopted at COP 7 in Marrakesh, Morocco, in 2001,
and are referred to as the "Marrakesh Accords." Its first commitment period started in 2008 and ended in 2012.

Most efforts to tackle climate change have been focused on isolated, distinct, and often competing goals
and actions on mitigation (lowering emissions) or adaptation (reducing vulnerability). Incremental
reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and climate vulnerabilities are important steps. However, longterm climate change management requires a shift from sectoral perspectives to a holistic approach that
incorporates climate change mitigation and adaptation into environment and sustainable development
goals and planning processes. Such an approach recognizes that climate change responses are closely
intertwined with development choices and actions involving multiple sectors, stakeholders, and
ecosystems. An integrated approach also enables countries to mobilize and employ diverse financing and
policy options required for low-emission and climate-resilient development.
UNDPs assistance to countries to formulate and implement green, low-emission and climate-resilient
development strategies (Green LECRDS) draws upon the experience and information generated by
UNDPs support for climate change adaptation and mitigation projects and National Communications to
the UNFCCC in some 140 countries over the past decade. The formulation and implementation of Green
LECRDS will allow developing countries to respond more effectively to climate change. Green LECRDS
will help guide conventional and innovative sources of sustainable development and climate financing,
and assist sub-national and national governments in implementing, monitoring, and catalyzing lowemission and climate-resilient development projects and programmes. This assistance to countries is
addressed through three Signature Programmes, (1) Supporting Integrated Climate Change Strategies;
(2) Advancing Cross-sectoral Climate Resilient Livelihoods; and (3) Strengthening Climate Information
and Early Warning Systems for Climate Resilient Development.