The Council adopted on 13 July the legislation necessary for the European Union to formally ratify the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol.
The second phase of the Kyoto Protocol (2013-2020) serves as a bridge towards a post-2020 global climate change agreement. In this context, the EU, its Member States and Iceland have committed to jointly achieve a 20% reduction in their combined greenhouse gas emissions for the period 2013-2020 compared to the level in 1990 or their chosen base year.
Miguel Arias Cañete, Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, said: "The EU took a decisive step in the final preparations to ratify the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol . We are already implementing and, as a result of robust policies, on track to meet our emissions reduction target under the Protocol. As the world prepares for a new global climate deal, formal ratification will once again show that the EU stands by its commitments."
The Council adopted two decisions:
Since Iceland is not an EU Member State, the terms of joint fulfilment concerning its participation had to be laid down in a separate international agreement.
In parallel with the ratification by the EU, the Member States and Iceland will be finalising their national ratification processes. The EU, its Member States and Iceland are expected to simultaneously deposit their respective instruments of acceptance with the UN in the coming months.