The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meeting in Paris in 2015 resulted in the historic Paris Agreement, which set out a plan to combat climate change. The agreement has been a significant topic of discussion and debate among the global community, and it is important for those studying for the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) exam to be familiar with the details of this agreement.

The Paris Agreement is an international treaty that was adopted by 196 parties at the 21st UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP21) in December 2015. The primary goal of the agreement is to limit the global temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, with an aim to keep it below 1.5 degrees Celsius. The agreement also aims to achieve a balance between greenhouse gas emissions and their removal by enhancing sinks and promoting sustainable development.

The Paris Agreement has three main components:

1. Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs): Each country is required to submit a plan outlining its intended contributions to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. These NDCs are not legally binding, but they are expected to be updated and revised every five years.

2. Transparency Framework: Each country is required to report on its emissions and progress towards meeting its NDCs. The framework also includes a process for reviewing and assessing progress.

3. Global Stocktake: A review of the collective progress towards achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement will take place every five years, with the first one scheduled for 2023.

The Paris Agreement has been praised for its global scope and ambitious goals. However, critics have argued that the agreement lacks teeth and does not require parties to take concrete action to meet their NDCs. Additionally, the withdrawal of the United States from the agreement in 2019 has been a setback for global efforts to combat climate change.

In conclusion, the Paris Agreement is an important international treaty that outlines a plan to combat climate change. Aspirants preparing for the UPSC exam should be familiar with the details of this agreement, including its goals, components, and challenges. Despite its limitations, the Paris Agreement represents a significant step forward in the global fight against climate change.