Navigating the Paris Climate Talks: Understanding the Policy Drivers and Mastering the Climate Lingo
The following post by Selina Lee-Andersen on our Canadian Energy Perspectives blog may be of interest to readers of this blog: Navigating the Paris Climate Talks: Understanding the Policy Drivers and Mastering the Climate Lingo
Setting the Stage
This week, all eyes are on Paris as world leaders converged on the French capital in a multi-national effort to forge a new global climate change agreement. As negotiators now turn their focus on transforming the climate rhetoric into legal text, climate change is back in the global spotlight. Over the years, climate change policy has experienced its ebbs and flows. Climate change arrived on the international stage at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, where 154 countries signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to stabilize atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at a level to prevent “dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system”. The UNFCCC entered into force on March 21, 1994 and 195 countries have ratified the UNFCCC to date. Subsequent international negotiations led to the Kyoto Protocol, an international treaty which extends the UNFCCC and commits its signatories to reduce GHG emissions. The Kyoto Protocol was adopted in December 1997 and came into force on February 16, 2005. There are currently 192 signatories to the Kyoto Protocol. While Canada withdrew from the Kyoto Protocol effective December 2012, a newly elected federal government has indicated its willingness to re-engage in international talks to reach a new global climate change treaty for the post-Kyoto era.
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