The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was adopted during the Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit in 1992. This Framework Convention is a universal convention of principle, acknowledging the existence of anthropogenic (human-induced) climate change and giving industrialised countries the major part of responsibility for combating it.
The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP 21 or CMP 11 is being held this week in Le Bourget, Paris, France. The conference will run from the 30th November to 11th December and will be the 21st yearly session of the Conference of the Parties since the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The conference objective is to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, from all the nations of the world, to keep global warming below 2°C.
Countries are aiming to reach agreement in Paris on a deal that will come into force from 2020. This means ensuring each nation pledges its own ‘nationally determined contribution’ for post-2020 action, no later than March 2015.
Why is the 2015 Paris United Nations Climate Change Conference important:
A strong international agreement will:
- Allow countries to push ahead with strategies and policies for carbon emissions reduction, knowing that others are doing likewise;
- Provide a predictable framework for a global low carbon economy;
- Allow developing countries to pursue low carbon development strategies and adapt to the effects of climate change; and,
- Improve international efforts to protect the natural environment.