The United States played an important role in the design and negotiation of the Paris Agreement and signed it in 2015. As one of its signatories, the United States has committed to reducing emissions by 26-28% by 2025 from 1990 levels. However, in 2017, the federal government announced its intention to withdraw from the agreement after a new government took office, and on November 4, 2020, the United States became the only nation to withdraw. In the United States and around the world, climate change destabilizes food production, supplants people in vulnerable countries and threatens our coasts with rising sea levels and more extreme storms. The Paris Agreement is the world`s common response to the fight against climate change in the years to come. Although the U.S. government has announced its intention to withdraw from the global pact, U.S. cities, states and businesses are working with world leaders to translate the commitment of this agreement into concrete action. Our collective security, our health and our prosperity are based on urgent and collaborative measures. The Kyoto Protocol was adopted. This is the world`s first agreement on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, which will come into force in 2005. On the eve of the 2015 UN climate change summit in Paris, emotions were high and fear was high. Negotiators were hoping for a new international agreement, the first such effort since the disappointing failure of the Copenhagen talks six years earlier.
However, the text of the agreement has been debated. This case focuses on the efforts of an average participant in this process, Josefina Braa-Varela, WWF`s director of forest and climate policy. Their priority: to try to ensure that forest protection is explicitly mentioned in the Paris Agreement. Two years earlier, national delegates had added to the international climate regime a set of rules and standards called the Warsaw Framework for REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation). Under this, developing countries could benefit from a payment in exchange for reducing deforestation or damage to forests or introducing practices such as sustainable forest management. But participation in the program was completely voluntary. It remained to be seen whether developed countries would provide sufficient funds to make this work and whether developing countries would be prepared to take action to measure and reduce deforestation and forest degradation.