The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement signed in 1997 during the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties. The Kyoto Protocol aims to limit greenhouse gas emissions in order to prevent the worst impacts of climate change.
The Protocol established binding targets for greenhouse gas emissions reductions for industrialized countries, known as “Kyoto Protocol countries”. These countries agreed to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 5% compared to 1990 levels by 2012.
The Kyoto Protocol was ratified by over 190 countries and was in effect from 2005 to 2012. In 2015, it was replaced by the Paris Agreement, which aims to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
The results of the Kyoto Protocol were mixed. Some countries were able to achieve or exceed their emission reduction targets, while others made less progress. Overall, global greenhouse gas emissions increased during the period the Protocol was in effect, although some countries did record a reduction in their emissions.