The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

The 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP24) held in in Katowice, Poland.

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is an international environmental treaty adopted on 9 May 1992 and opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro from 3 to 14 June 1992. It then entered into force on 21 March 1994, after a sufficient number of countries had ratified it.


The framework sets non binding limits on greenhouse gas emissions for individual countries and contains no enforcement mechanisms. The work under the UNFCCC is facilitated by a secretariat in Bonn, Germany.

In 1997, the Kyoto Protocol was concluded and established legally binding obligations for developed countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions in the period 2008–2012.

The 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference produced an agreement stating that future global warming should be limited to below 2.0 °C relative to the pre-industrial level.

In 2015 the Paris Agreement was adopted, governing emission reductions from 2020 on through commitments of countries in Nationally Determined Contributions, lowering the target to 1.5 °C. The Paris Agreement entered into force on 4 November 2016.


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