Ratification of the Paris Agreement on climate change

Cyprus formally ratified the Paris Agreement on climate change in December 2016, by means of the Ratification Law of the Paris Agreement, Law 30(III)/2016, which was published in the government gazette on 23 December 2016.  The English text of the Paris Agreement is set out in Part 1 of the Annex to the Law, with a Greek translation in Part 2. In the event of any discrepancy between the two, the English text prevails. The competent authority appointed for application of the provisions of the law is the Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment. The law gives the Council of Ministers power to issue regulations for the better application of the provisions of the law and to determine any issue arising under the law.

The Paris Agreement is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gases emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020. It took effect on 4 November 2016. To date, 194 members of the UNFCCC have signed the treaty, and 141 of them have ratified it.

Awareness regarding climate change has advanced considerably in Cyprus over the years, and the enactment of the law will consolidate these advances. The way it is implemented, and especially the approach adopted by the competent authorities, will be a crucial element in determining its success.