Today marks the 10th anniversary of the entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol, the world's first emission reduction treaty. Reviewing the agreement's outcomes to date is a timely topic in the run up to crucial climate talks in Paris.
The international agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was initially approved in Kyoto, Japan, on the 11 th of December 1997 but only entered into force on the 16th of February, 2005 - exactly ten years ago.
The first commitment period between 2008 and 2012 marked a phase when the European Community and 37 industrialized countries committed to take a leading role in reducing their emissions to an average of five percent against their 1990 levels. The secretariat of the UNFCCC is initially expected to complete the final accounting for the first phase of the Kyoto Protocol later this year.
By placing value on emission reductions, the Kyoto Protocol also spurred the creation of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) that permitted developed and developing countries to cooperate by reducing emissions and boosting clean development at the same time. Today the 7 800 CDM projects and programmes receive a saleable credit for each tonne of emissions they avoid or reduce. Together they represent an estimated 1.5 billion tonnes of CO2 saved to date.
Read more about the Kyoto Protocol and the achievements of the CDM: