UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

One of the three Rio Conventions, the UNFCCC's ultimate objective is to achieve the stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous interference with the climate system.

Bruno Oberle at COP27 HLSPhoto: IISD/ENB

The Paris Agreement under the UNFCCC was adopted in December 2015 and entered into force on November 2016. This agreement was the outcome of the negotiations launched in 2011 at the 17th Conference of the Parties in Durban to develop a legal instrument applicable to all Parties to cut greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions and to be implemented from 2020.

In the years leading up to the Paris Agreement, IUCN consistently provided scientific and technical inputs to Parties and stressed that while biodiversity and ecosystems are threatened by climate change, their conservation, restoration and sustainable management generate significant and practical nature-based solutions to climate change. These cost-effective no-regret solutions can contribute to both mitigation and adaptation objectives while also yielding other important economic, social and environmental co-benefits, thus enabling Parties to simultaneously contribute to other internationally agreed frameworks.

The Paris Agreement explicitly acknowledges the need to promote and ensure environmental integrity, and calls on Parties to conserve and enhance GHG sinks and reservoirs, including biomass, forests and oceans as well as other terrestrial, coastal and marine ecosystems.


Convened under the Presidency of Egypt, the 27th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC COP27) was held in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt from 6 to 20 November 2022.

Building on the momentum from COP26 in Glasgow, where UNFCCC Parties explicitly recognized – for the first time – the “interlinked global crises of climate change and biodiversity loss, and the critical role of protecting, conserving and restoring nature and ecosystems in delivering benefits for climate adaptation and mitigation”, IUCN continued to emphasise Nature-based Solutions as a key approach to address our urgent biodiversity and climate challenges.

content featured image
IUCN Statement | 19 November, 2022
IUCN expresses concern over slow progress at COP27 while welcoming recognition of Nature-based Solutions
As COP27 closed today, IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, expressed its…