Instead of giving China and India a passport to pollution, as Trump claims, the pact represents the first time these two major developing countries have agreed on concrete and ambitious climate commitments. Both countries, which are already ready to leave the world ahead in renewable energy, have made significant progress towards achieving their Paris goals. And since Trump announced his intention to withdraw the United States from the deal, the leaders of China and India have reaffirmed their commitment and continued to implement domestic measures to achieve their goals. In response to the climate challenge, the agreement recognises that states have common but different responsibilities, i.e. according to their respective capacities and different national circumstances. In addition, countries aim to “reach a global peak in greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible.” The deal has been described as an incentive and engine for the sale of fossil fuels. [13] [14] The Paris Agreement has a “bottom-up” structure unlike most international environmental treaties, which are “top-down” and are characterized by internationally defined standards and objectives that states must implement. [32] Unlike its predecessor, the Kyoto Protocol, which sets commitment targets with the force of law, the Paris Agreement, which emphasizes consensus-building, makes it possible to achieve voluntary and nationally defined targets. [33] Specific climate goals are therefore promoted politically rather than legally binding. Only the processes that govern the preparation of reports and the consideration of these objectives are prescribed by international law. This structure is particularly noteworthy for the United States – since there are no legal mitigation or funding objectives, the agreement is considered an “executive agreement rather than a treaty.” Since the 1992 UNFCCC treaty has received Senate approval, this new agreement does not need further congressional legislation for it to enter into force.

[33] The Paris Agreement was opened for signature on 22 April 2016 (Earth Day) at a ceremony in New York. [59] After several European Union states ratified the agreement in October 2016, enough countries that had ratified the agreement were producing enough greenhouse gases worldwide for the agreement to enter into force. [60] The agreement entered into force on November 4, 2016. [2] At the 2011 UN Climate Change Conference, the Durban Platform (and the ad hoc working group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action) was created with the aim of negotiating a legal instrument for climate action from 2020. The resulting agreement is expected to be adopted in 2015. [62] The goal of preventing what scientists consider to be a dangerous and irreversible level of climate change – reached at about 2°C of warming compared to the pre-industrial times – is at the heart of the agreement. .