Landmark Paris Climate Change Agreement enters into force TODAY


Paris Agreement on Climate Change enters into force today. This is an important moment for global health and wellbeing.

The Paris Agreement was adopted last year at the UN climate conference in December 2015. In order for it to enter into force, at least 55 Parties accounting for at least 55 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions were required to ratify, with the agreement then entering into force 30 days later. This threshold was reached on 5 October 2016.

The first session of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement will take place in Marrakech in conjunction with COP 22 and CMP 12 in December 2016.

In a statement issued before the threshold for ratification of the Paris Agreement was crossed, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said:

“Strong international support for the Paris Agreement entering into force is testament to the urgency for action, and reflects the consensus of governments that robust global cooperation is essential to meet the climate challenge.”

Climate and Health

Ratification of the Paris agreement is a vital step forward sustaining health and wellbeing across the planet. The diagram below showing a summary of public health challenges and solutions, taken from the Commonwealth’s Systems Framework for Healthy Policy, shows how climate change sits at the top of the environmental determinants which need to be addressed to allow health and wellbing across the planet.


The Commonwealth Health team are working with countries and other partners across member states, and beyond, to move this agenda forward. A policy brief on Climate and Health will be produced for the next Commonwealth Health Ministers Meeting in May 2017.

Commonwealth leaders came together last year to pledge to work together and with all other Parties to achieve an outcome from Paris.

Downloadable copy of the Paris Agreement

Q&As on legal and procedural issues of CMA 1

Further information including the Status of Ratification can be found at this link. To date 97 of 197 Parties have ratified the Convention