Although the agreement was signed in December 2015, the agreement did not enter into force until 4 November 2016, 30 days after it was ratified by at least 55 countries representing 55% of global emissions. The Kyoto Protocol, a pioneering environmental agreement adopted at COP3 in Japan in 1997, is the first time that nations have agreed on legal country-specific emission reduction targets. The protocol, which only entered into force in 2005, set binding emission reduction targets only for industrialized countries, arguing that they were responsible for most of the world`s high greenhouse gas emissions. The United States initially signed the agreement, but never ratified it; President George W. Bush argued that the deal would hurt the U.S. economy because developing countries like China and India would not be involved. Without the participation of these three countries, the effectiveness of the treaty has proven to be limited, as its objectives cover only a small fraction of total global emissions. NRDC is working to make the Global Climate Action Summit a success by inspiring more ambitious commitments for the historic 2015 agreement and strengthened initiatives to reduce pollution. The Katowice package, adopted at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP24) in December 2018, contains common and detailed rules, procedures and guidelines that regulate the Paris Agreement.

Since Mr Trump`s announcement, US envoys have continued to participate – as planned – in UN climate negotiations in order to shore up the details of the deal. Meanwhile, thousands of leaders have stepped in across the country to fill the void created by the lack of federal climate leadership, reflecting the will of the overwhelming majority of Americans who support the Paris Agreement.