In 1992, President George H.W. Bush joined 107 other heads of state at the Rio Earth Summit in Brazil to adopt a series of environmental agreements, including the UNFCCC framework, which is still in force today. The international treaty aims to prevent dangerous human intervention in the planet`s climate systems in the long term. The pact does not set limits on greenhouse gas emissions from individual countries and does not contain enforcement mechanisms, but establishes a framework for international negotiations on future agreements or protocols to set binding emissions targets. Participating countries meet annually at a Conference of the Parties (COP) to assess their progress and continue discussions on how best to combat climate change. The Paris Agreement reaffirms the obligations of industrialized countries to the UNFCCC; the COP`s decision attached to the agreement extends the target of $100 billion per year until 2025 and calls for a new target that, in addition, „extends over $100 billion a year.” The agreement also broadens the donor base beyond developed countries by encouraging other countries to provide „voluntary” support. China, for example, pledged $3 billion in 2015 to help other developing countries. The changes needed to achieve these goals are enormous and rapid, much larger and faster than what national governments would make on the sole basis of own interests, especially given the inertia of the status quo. A certain strength or mechanism is needed to speed things up, to push all countries further, faster.
If the United States joined the agreement, it would be technically necessary to implement an NDC within 30 days. Developed countries have committed, under the UNFCCC, to support containment and adaptation efforts in developing countries. Under the Copenhagen and Cancun agreements, developed countries have pledged to mobilize $100 billion in public and private financing per year for developing countries by 2020. Since the Paris Agreement is expected to apply after 2020, the first formal inventory of the agreement will not be carried out until 2023. However, as part of a decision attached to the agreement, the parties decided to restart the five-year cycle with a „facilitation dialogue” on collective progress in 2018 and the presentation of the NDC by 2030 to 2020.