NEW YORK (September 21, 2016) — UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon hosted a special event at which 31 countries officially joined the Paris Agreement on climate change, bringing the total to 60 countries representing 48 percent of emissions that have now officially joined. This brings the Agreement close to the threshold of 55 countries representing at least 55 percent of global emissions that will trigger the Agreement to enter into force 30 days hence. See WRI’s Paris Agreement Tracker to view which countries have officially joined.

Following is a statement by Paula Caballero, Global Director, Climate Program, World Resources Institute:

“The world has banded together around a zero-carbon, climate resilient future, pushing us much closer to bringing the Paris Agreement into full effect.

“With 31 more countries joining, it is abundantly clear that support for the Paris Agreement is unwavering. The global community is rallying behind swift and ambitious action to combat climate change. The fact that Paris Agreement will likely enter into force this year took everyone by surprise. This rapid pace reflects a spirit of cooperation rarely seen on a global scale.

“World leaders are coming to realize that strong climate action is a prerequisite for stronger and more inclusive economic growth. By sending clear signals that a zero-carbon future is on the way, the private and public sectors can get down to work, aligning their plans of action with this new reality.

“Today we pause and celebrate the important progress towards bringing the Paris Agreement into force. Then we again pick up our shovels and continue the hard work of creating a safer and more prosperous planet.”