The Paris Agreement is the world`s first comprehensive climate agreement.  The Paris Agreement was launched at the signing on April 22, 2016 (Earth Day) at a ceremony in New York.  After the agreement was ratified by several EU member states in October 2016, there were enough countries that had ratified the agreement to produce enough greenhouse gases in the world for the agreement to enter into force.  The agreement came into force on November 4, 2016.  Although the agreement has been welcomed by many, including French President Francois Hollande and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, criticism has also emerged. James Hansen, a former NASA scientist and climate change expert, expressed anger that most of the agreement is made up of “promises” or goals, not firm commitments.  He called the Paris talks a fraud with “nothing, only promises” and believed that only a generalized tax on CO2 emissions, which is not part of the Paris agreement, would force CO2 emissions down fast enough to avoid the worst effects of global warming.  The Paris Agreement has a bottom-up structure, unlike most international environmental treaties that are “top down,” characterized by internationally defined standards and objectives and must be implemented by states.  Unlike its predecessor, the Kyoto Protocol, which sets legal commitment targets, the Paris Agreement, which focuses on consensual training, allows for voluntary and national objectives.
 Specific climate targets are therefore politically promoted and not legally binding. Only the processes governing reporting and revision of these objectives are imposed by international law. This structure is particularly noteworthy for the United States – in the absence of legal mitigation or funding objectives, the agreement is seen as an “executive agreement, not a treaty.” Since the 1992 UNFCCC treaty was approved by the Senate, this new agreement does not require further legislation from Congress for it to enter into force.  The Paris Agreement is an environmental agreement that was adopted in 2015 by almost all nations to address climate change and its negative consequences. The agreement aims to significantly reduce global greenhouse gas emissions in order to limit global temperature increase to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels this century, while continuing to pursue ways to limit the increase to 1.5 degrees. The agreement provides for the commitment of all major emitters to reduce their pollution from climate change and to strengthen these commitments over time. It provides developed countries with a means to assist developing countries in their mitigation and adaptation efforts and establishes a framework for monitoring, reporting and strengthening countries` individual and collective climate goals. InDCs become CNDs – nationally determined contributions – as soon as a country formally adheres to the agreement. There are no specific requirements as to how or how many countries should reduce emissions, but there were political expectations about the nature and rigour of the targets set by different countries. As a result, the scale and ambition of national plans vary widely, largely reflecting each country`s capacity, level of development and contribution to emissions over time. China, for example, has committed to cleaning up its CO2 emissions by 2030 at the latest and reducing CO2 emissions per unit of gross domestic product (GDP) by 60-65% by 2030 from 2005 levels.
India has set a target of reducing emissions intensity by 33-35% from 2005 levels by 2030 and producing 40% of its electricity from non-fossil fuels.