23381505870_fcb4893256_zLate last year the world reached a landmark agreement on climate change in Paris, a fundamental pivot toward a zero-carbon and climate-resilient world. However, key steps lie ahead to bring the agreement to fruition:

  1. Countries are expected to finalize their current national climate plans and shift them from being Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) into Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) for the Agreement to take effect
  2. Each country must sign and indicate their consent to be bound by the Agreement and will only take effect once 55 parties to the UNFCCC representing atleast 55% of total global greenhouse gases sign for it to be legally binding
  3. On April 22, 2016, All Heads of State will sign the Agreement at a high-level signing ceremony at the United Nations in New York on 26th April 2016. The Agreement will then be open for signature for one year, until April 21, 2017
  4.  Each country will be required to fulfill its necessary domestic processes and deposit an “instrument of ratification, acceptance or approval” which will indicate that the country has completed all necessary processes and can now join the Agreement
  5. After the one-year signing period, the Agreement will be open for accession, which is a term used when a country becomes a Party to an international agreement that other countries have already signed
  6. The Agreement will be in full legal force and effect when at least 55 Parties to the UNFCCC that account for at least 55 percent of the total global greenhouse gas emissions have deposited their instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession. This will depends on how quickly individual countries will be able to complete their domestic approval processes. Once the Agreement enters into force, the first meeting of the Parties to the Agreement will occur in conjunction with the next COP

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