New York

21 September 2016

Secretary-General's opening remarks at High-Level Event on Entry into Force of the Paris Agreement [as delivered]

I am pleased to welcome you to this morning’s event.  Thank you for taking your time at this early hour.

On 22 April, here in this great hall, 175 countries signed the Paris Agreement.

It was the largest, single-day signing ceremony in history.  

The continued, strong global momentum behind this climate change agreement is unprecedented.

We must capitalize on this momentum and ensure the Paris Agreement enters into force this year.  

The remarkable support for this agreement reflects the urgency and magnitude of the challenge.

Emissions continue to rise.

So does the global thermostat – and the risks. 

Climate impacts are increasing.

No nation or community is immune, but the vulnerable are feeling the effects first and worst.

There is no time to waste. 

Today will take us one step closer to bringing the Paris Agreement into force this year. 

I congratulate the 29 countries, which account for 40 per cent of global emissions, that have already formally joined the Agreement.

This morning I would like to recognize the countries that have joined the Paris Agreement since the 22 April Signature Ceremony. 

I thank the countries that will deposit their instruments of ratification with me today.

And I thank those world leaders who have submitted recorded video messages committing to join the agreement before the end of 2016. 

I commend this collective display of leadership.

Only through such solidarity can we limit climate risks and build a world of peace, dignity and prosperity for all on a healthy planet.

I thank you for your leadership.  Thank you very much.