New York

15 October 2016

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on an Amendment to the Montreal Protocol to Limit Near-term Warming of the Planet

The Secretary-General welcomes the adoption by governments meeting in Kigali, Rwanda, of a critically important amendment to the Montreal Protocol phasing-down production and use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). HFCs are a powerful, short-lived greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. As HFCs are also the fastest-growing of all greenhouse gases, curbing their use will help limit near-term warming of the planet. 
The Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol builds on the strong global momentum for multilateral efforts to address climate change, including the landmark Paris Agreement, which will enter into force 4 November; the adoption last week of a global, market-based mechanism for emission reductions by the international aviation industry; and other multilateral efforts under the United Nations Framework for Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) process.
Adoption of the amendment on HFCs will provide considerable benefits in the coming decades and help advance the Sustainable Development Goals. Significantly, the global phase-down of HFCs could avoid up to half a degree of global warming by the end of this century, providing a major boost for efforts to limit global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius as stated in the Paris Agreement and to pursue efforts toward 1.5 degrees.
The Secretary-General calls for continued collaboration and cooperation by all sectors of society in implementing these timely and much-needed agreements to reduce the risks of climate change.