Liechtenstein signs Paris Agreement on climate protection

On 22 April, Liechtenstein took part in the international signing ceremony for the Paris Agreement on climate protection, joining more than 130 other States to sign the treaty.

On 5 April, the Government resolved to sign the Paris Agreement on climate protection, pending ratification. At the signing ceremony on 22 April in New York, UN Ambassador Christian Wenaweser signed the agreement on behalf of Liechtenstein.

The Paris Agreement was adopted on 12 December 2015 by the States parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Liechtenstein was represented by Minister of Environmental Affairs Marlies Amann-Marxer. The Paris Agreement constitutes significant progress in the global fight against climate change. The Paris Agreement is intended to enter into force in 2020 and replace the Kyoto Protocol. Unlike the Kyoto Protocol, the Paris Agreement is no longer merely binding on industrial countries, but rather on all States parties. Upon ratification, the States parties must set binding national targets to reduce greenhouse gases, which must then be implemented. Achievement of these targets is to be monitored on a regular basis. In addition to the reduction of greenhouse gases, the agreement contains provisions to improve climate adaptation, to manage damage and losses arising through climate change, and to provide financial support for developing countries implementing the agreement.

While the Kyoto Protocol contained static reduction targets, the Paris Agreement has a significantly more dynamic character. States are called upon to review their climate targets every five years and, if needed, to submit new and more ambitious targets. The goal is to limit global climate change to 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius. Starting in the second half of the 21st century, "decarbonization" is to take place, with the ultimate goal of eliminating fossil fuels entirely. Like almost all States parties to the UNFCCC, Liechtenstein submitted its planned climate targets in 2015. According to these targets, the Government aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 as compared with 1990. This target is within a similar range as the climate targets of the EU and Switzerland. Subject to ratification of the Paris Agreement, Liechtenstein intends to implement this target in a binding manner starting in 2020.


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