Paris climate accord ratified, to start next month, says UN
Nations representing 56.75 pct of emissions sign up, with agreement to start in 30 days
A global agreement to combat climate change by shifting the world economy away from fossil fuels will take force next month after passing a threshold for ratification on Wednesday with support from European nations.
Support for the Paris Agreement has widened to nations representing 56.75 percent of world greenhouse gas emissions, above the 55 percent needed for implementation, a UN website showed. The deal will formally start in 30 days.
European Union countries including Germany, France and Slovakia, which have completed domestic ratification, helped trigger the formal entry into force after a green light from the European Parliament on Tuesday.
The agreement, reached in December 2015, already has support from other major emitters led by China, the United States and India. In total, 72 countries out of 195 have ratified the agreement, according to the UN website.
Several nations hailed the rapid ratification of an agreement meant to cut global greenhouse gas emissions, mainly from burning fossil fuels, to limit floods, droughts, more powerful storms and rising ocean levels.
It took eight years for the previous UN climate deal, the 1997 Kyoto Protocol that obliged only rich nations to cut emissions, to gain enough backing to take effect.