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Big News on Climate at the United Nations General Assembly

At the United Nations General Assembly, President Obama's Administration committed to undertaking several important climate actions. Here's what you need to know.

Last December, following President Obama’s leadership, more than 190 countries adopted the Paris Agreement -- the most ambitious climate change agreement in history. And this week, at the United Nations General Assembly, the Administration built on that progress by committing to undertake several important actions.


 Here’s what you need to know:

 We've made progress on entry into force for the Paris Agreement

Global Progress towards an Amendment to the Montreal Protocol

  • More than 100 countries called for securing an ambitious amendment to the Montreal Protocol to phase out HFCs -- a greenhouse gas up to thousands of times more potent than CO2
  • A group of donor countries and philanthropists announced their intent to provide $80 million in support to help countries implement this amendment, a huge step toward improving energy efficiency

We're building momentum towards limiting international aviation emissions 

  • Next week, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) will meet toconsider adopting a global market-based measure to limit aviation emissions, a small but rapidly growing source of emissions
  • This week, before the ICAO Assembly has begun, more than 55 countries representing more than 75 percent of global airline traffic have announced their support for the measure and their intent to be early participants – critical momentum for this smart, pragmatic approach

The President signed a Presidential Memorandum on national security and climate change

  • President Obama took another major step to address the threat of climate change by signing a Presidential Memorandum (PM) requiring the federal government to fully consider the impacts of climate change in the development and implementation of all national security policies and plans
  • The Presidential Memorandum was released alongside a report by the National Intelligence Council finding that the effects of climate change are “likely to pose significant national security challenges for the United States over the next two decades,” including stressing our military operations and bases
  • More details on this President Memorandum here

John Morton is the Senior Director for Energy and Climate Change at the White House National Security Council.


Stay tuned—and don't forget to follow us on Twitter for ongoing climate updates at @FactsOnClimate