France Becomes the First G7 Member to Approve Paris Agreement

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France has finally signed the Paris Agreement! President Francois Hollande, today finalised the ratification of the Paris climate accord which was reached in December 2015, making France the first industrialised country to do so.

“Signing is good, ratifying is better,” Hollande said at the Elysee Palace ceremony, flanked by Environment Minister Segolene Royal, Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and other top officials.

The French President emphasized that the deal will not come into force unless at least 55 countries responsible for at least 55 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions ratify it.

As earlier reported, the country’s senate previously ratified the Paris Agreement on climate change on last Wednesday after a unanimous vote and the ruling was subject to President Francois Hollande’s seal of approval, which was expected within two weeks.

France’s ruling will be officially registered by the United Nations when the EU completes the formality of ratification for the 28-country bloc. The 32-page deal also calls on rich nations to muster at least 100 billion dollars ($90 billion) a year in climate aid from 2020.

At the December COP21 gathering in Paris, 177 governments reached the historic agreement, setting a target of limiting global warming to “well below” 2.0 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) compared with pre-industrial levels.

So far, 17 states — mainly small Islands and low-lying coastal countries that are especially vulnerable to the sea-level rise have ratified the deal. Hungary is the only other EU nation to give parliamentary approval of the deal with a range of countries indicating a preference to wait until Europe’s overall climate goal has been split into national targets.

Hollande called on other European countries to follow France’s lead by the end of the year.

 

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