Friday, April 22, 2016 11:55 pm
More than 170 countries on Friday gathered at the United Nations to sign the Paris agreement, a milestone in global efforts for climate change governance.
The event also set a record for countries inking an international accord in a single day.
The active participation in the signing sends a robust message that the global action to deal with climate change will not cease. Signing of the Paris agreement marks a new beginning in international cooperation, the accord is expected to enter into force before 2020, its target time.
The signing here and ratifications in capitals are necessary in ensuring the Paris deal to take effect at an early date, thus representing a major step toward the effective efforts to turn Paris aspirations into action.
The active signing also embodies the firm determination of the international community to join hands in safeguarding the shared destiny of humanity for a new sustainable future.
The universal agreement is mainly aimed at keeping a global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius and to drive efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The 1.5 degree Celsius limit is a significantly safer defense line against the worst impacts of a changing climate.
“I urge all countries to move quickly to join the Agreement at the national level so that the Paris Agreement can enter into force as early as possible,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said at a high-level signing ceremony at UN Headquarters in New York. “The window for keeping global temperature rise well below 2 degrees Celsius, let alone 1.5 degrees, is rapidly closing.”
The historic Paris accord, an outcome of win-win cooperation in long and arduous multilateral negotiations, has been hailed by a majority of UN member states as a wide international consensus reached in December last year to fairly split responsibilities between developed and developing countries. It for the first time brings all nations into a common cause based on their historic, current and future responsibilities.