Climate: Information for specialists

Switzerland pursues an active climate policy aimed at reducing the risks and impact of climate change. It campaigns at the international level for clear rules – most recently in the Paris Agreement – and has had a national legal basis for the implementation of climate goals since 1999 in the form of the CO2 Act.

The Paris Agreement has three objectives:

  1. To limit global warming to well below 2 or preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius. For this to happen, greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to net zero;
  2. To increase the ability to adapt. Here it is necessary to develop strategies to deal with climate change;
  3. To make finance flows compatible with the climate in order to bring investments in line with the reduction targets and improved adaptability.

Switzerland recognised these three objectives when it ratified the Paris Agreement in October 2017. The CO2 Act forms the national legal basis for the implementation of the international commitments. It defines efficient tools for the reduction of harmful greenhouse gas emissions and obliges the Confederation to coordinate measures for adapting to climate change.

Climate change and effects

Climate change is having far-reaching effects on, for example, the water supply, material cycles, flora and fauna and many areas of society.

Reduction of emissions

Switzerland is helping to limit global warming and sets targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. These targets are updated in stages.

Reduction measures

Switzerland has introduced a wide range of specific measures aimed at reducing its greenhouse gas emissions.

Adaptation to climate change

In the best-case scenario it is possible to limit global warming to 1.5°C, which means it is increasingly important to be able to adapt to the effects of climate change. The Federal Council’s strategy provides a framework for a coordinated nationwide approach.

Climate and financial markets

In future, more money is to be invested in technologies and fuels that are less greenhouse gas-intensive. To measure progress, Switzerland carries out regular climate compatibility tests.

International Affairs

Switzerland works at an international level to promote clear rules for the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

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Last modification 29.12.2020

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