Currently, 197 countries – every nation on earth, the last signatory is war-torn Syria – have adopted the Paris Agreement. 179 of them have consolidated their climate proposals with official approval, including, for the time being, the United States. The only major emitters that have yet to formally accede to the agreement are Russia, Turkey and Iran. How each country is on track to meet its obligations under the Paris Agreement can be constantly monitored online (via the Climate Action Tracker [95] and the climate clock). On October 5, 2016, when the agreement reached enough signatures to cross the threshold, U.S. President Barack Obama said, “Even if we achieve all the goals… we will only get to part of where we need to go. He also said that “this agreement will help delay or avoid some of the worst consequences of climate change.” It will help other nations reduce their emissions over time and set bolder goals as technology progresses, all under a strong transparency system that will allow each nation to assess the progress of all other nations. [27] The objective of the agreement is to reduce global warming as described in Article 2 by improving the implementation of the UNFCCC, recognizing:[11] that many developing countries and small island states that have contributed the least to climate change could suffer the most from its consequences, and contains a plan for developed countries and others that are able to do so.” climate change. The agreement builds on the financial commitments of the 2009 Copenhagen Accord, which aimed to increase public and private climate finance to developing countries to $100 billion per year by 2020. (To put it in perspective, in 2017 alone, global military spending amounted to about $1.7 trillion, more than a third of which came from the United States. The Copenhagen Pact also created the Green Climate Fund to mobilize transformation funding with targeted public dollars. The Paris agreement expected the world to set a higher annual target by 2025 to build on the $100 billion target by 2020 and create mechanisms to achieve this.

A new climate agreement was needed to maintain the international process to combat climate change beyond 2020. This was adopted at the Paris COP in 2015 in the form of a “Paris Agreement”, which for the first time contained a specific target to limit global warming to a level well below 2oC above pre-industrial levels of 1750. Ratified countries have set their own reduction targets, with a review and strengthening of efforts every five years to combat climate change. In October 2016, the required number of at least 55 ratified countries responsible for at least 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions was reached, meaning the agreement could enter into force. Negotiators of the agreement stated that the INDCs presented at the time of the Paris conference were insufficient and found that “the estimates of aggregate greenhouse gas emissions in 2025 and 2030 resulting from the planned contributions at the national level are not covered by the least expensive scenarios of 2oC, but lead to a projected level of 55 gigatons in 2030.” and recognizes that “much greater efforts to reduce emissions will be required to keep the increase in the global average temperature below 2 degrees Celsius, by reducing emissions to 40 gigatonnes or 1.5 degrees Celsius.” [25] [Clarification needed] The agreement not only reduced emissions, but also established the clean development mechanism to act on carbon.