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Approval of the Paris Agreement and its status in Peru

By: Edson Marín Jara (@edmarinj) e Yajaira Castillo Acosta (@byunnoir)

The Paris Agreement is an international treaty that was adopted at the COP21 developed in Paris on December 12, 2015, and subsequently entered into force on November 4, 2016. The climate objective is to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5°C through multinational commitments to a common cause: combating climate change and adapting to its effects (UNFCCC, 2021). According to Gao et al. (2017), this stems from bilateral joint statements issued by China with the United States, France, and the European Union before the Paris Climate Change Conference, where that country mentioned that it was necessary to "consider a global temperature target within 2°C", thus representing an initial consensus of China and developed countries, subsequently, it was clarified that efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels; it is worth mentioning that this fact was magnified given that 175 parties (174 countries and the European Union) participated in the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2016.

Compliance with the Paris Agreement is accompanied by a legally binding commitment in which countries submit their climate change commitments known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) whose impact is periodically assessed by the signatory countries of the agreement (Stua et al., 2022). To achieve the NDC targets, many countries have employed national climate policies with the optimal pathways to achieve the Paris Agreement targets, however, many countries initially lacked clarity on the measures to be taken to reduce their emissions; this uncertainty further increased after an adverse event occurred on June 01, 2017, when the administration of former President Donald Trump formally notified the United Nations that the U.S. would terminate all participation in the Paris agreement on climate change mitigation. This greatly concerned the global community because it would jeopardize global collaborative efforts to address the dangers of climate change (Saelen et al., 2020). Happily, on January 20, 2021, President Joe Biden's administration signed the instrument to bring the U.S. back into the Paris agreement (Kenfack, 2022).

The current context in Peru

Despite being one of the countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, Peru arrived relatively late to the debate and the development of policy and regulatory frameworks related to climate change. It was after the Conference of the Parties (COP) 20 in Lima that a generalized interest in climate change, its effects, and how we can face it at the country level was accentuated. And the Paris Agreement ended up consolidating the issue and positioning a climate agenda both internationally and domestically (Manuel Ruiz Muller, 2017).

From the signing of the Paris Agreement, Peru created a national structure to combat climate change through mitigation and adaptation actions, where the Nationally Determined Contributions are the interventions that the country reports for the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions; under this framework, Peru has divided the 76 NDCs into 6 sectors: energy, transport, industrial processes, agriculture, forestry, and waste, thus committing to reduce its annual GHG emissions by 30% by 2030 (Vásquez-Rowe et al., 2019).

Therefore, national policies represent a relevant axis to advance toward the achievement of the Paris goals (Malerba et al., 2021). Thus, Peru has also developed internally a multiplicity of norms, instruments, and official documents related to climate change. Some of the most important are: el Programa Nacional de Conservación de Bosques para la Mitigación del Cambio Climático en el 2010 (National Forest Conservation Program for Climate Change Mitigation), el Plan de Acción de Adaptación y Mitigación al Cambio Climático en el 2010 (Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Action Plan), la Política Energética Nacional del Perú (Peruvian National Energy Policy), la Estrategia Nacional ante el Cambio Climático en el 2015 (National Climate Change Strategy), Perú 2030: la Visión del Perú que queremos (Peru 2030: The Vision of the Peru we want), among others (Manuel Ruiz Muller, 2017).


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