Efforts by China and US: an exemplar for world
To bring the hard-won Paris Climate Change Agreement into force, United Nations members must complete a three-step dance move — sign it, ratify (or endorse) it and then deposit the instruments of ratification or acceptance with the UN secretary-general.
There is a provision under which the agreement can only come into force 30 days after at least 55 countries, accounting for more than 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions, have signed it.
The Secretary General, Ban Kimoon, aims to see the 55 countries/55% target achieved before his 10-year tenure finishes at the end of this year.
Before September only about 20 countries had completed their domestic procedures, and they accounted for only about 1% of
All the other G20 economies have committed to following the example set by China and the US, which produce 38 percent of carbon emissions.
But the UN’s scoreboard on its climate change website made a big jump when two of the world’s biggest carbon emitters, China and United States, officially endorsed the agreement on Sept 3, one day before the G20 Summit opened in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province.
At the ceremony, which President Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama attended, Ban said what the two countries had done “added powerful momentum” to the drive for the agreement to come into force this year.
What is more important is that all the other G20 economies have committed to following the example set by China and the US, which account for 38% of global carbon emissions.
In the nine-page communique from the G20 summit, the leaders said they were determined to consider the two major international and interlinked universal treaties clinched last year, namely the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris agreement.
In order to do so, they committed to endorse the Paris agreement as soon as possible and recognized the need for a means of implementation for other countries, including financial resources, and the importance to help them, namely through the Green Climate Fund.
To further mobilize world leaders to speed up the process, Ban was organizing a special event for Sept. 21 to deposit the instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession to the Paris agreement. To further indicate China’s political determination in global green endeavors, Premier Li Keqiang was due to attend the event.
In an interview with China Daily, the Belgian foreign minister, Didier Reynders, said he sensed the encouragement from China and the US and said the European Union should follow suit.
The EU has not announced its timetable for doing so.
On April 22, 175 countries signed the Paris agreement at a ceremony in New York, but signing was only the first step toward joining the agreement. It must be followed by instruments of ratification or acceptance being deposited.
After negotiations, countries agreed to limit global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius, while pursuing efforts to keep any temperature rise at 1.5 degrees.