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Good News: Paris Agreement on Climate Change Will Soon Take Effect With EU's Ratification

Oct 06, 2016 04:47 AM EDT
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World leaders gather in Paris for climate summit except Trump

The Paris Agreement on climate change will soon take effect as the European Union (EU) has voted overwhelmingly to ratify the international plan to curb the greenhouse emissions.

With the entry of the EU, the agreement is well passed the required 55 countries. Representatives from 28 member countries of the European Union have voted 610 to 28 in favor of the ratification, according to a report from National Public Radio.

"Today the European Union turned climate ambition into climate action. The Paris Agreement is the first of its kind and it would not have been possible were it not for the European Union. Today we continued to show leadership and prove that, together, the European Union can deliver," said President Jean-Claude Juncker, head of the European Commission, in a statement.

Collectively, countries in the EU are responsible for 12.1 percent of global greenhouse emissions. Before the union decided to join the Paris Agreement, 62 countries have already entered the agreement, but their collective emissions are only 52 percent, a small percentage away from the required global emissions. Now, with the European Union's greenhouse emission, the requirement has finally been met and the Agreement will take effect.

The agreement will enter into force 30 days after 55 countries representing 55 percent of global emissions ratify it. After being ratified, the Paris Agreement will become binding for four years and all the participating nations are required to enforce the deal.

Washington Post reported that only seven member countries of the European Union have individually ratified the Agreement so far. But, their collective emissions are more than enough to seal the deal. Nations who pledged in the Agreement will each submit a national plan on how it will reduce its greenhouse emissions. Each action plan will take into consideration the economic needs and abilities of each country. Other nations that have pledge in the Paris Agreement include the top emitters worldwide, the U.S. and China.

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