The Paris Agreement culminates a six-year transition towards an international climate policy architecture based on parties submitting national pledges every five years1. An important policy task will be to assess and compare these contributions2, 3. We use four integrated assessment models to produce metrics of Paris Agreement pledges, and show differentiated effort across countries: wealthier countries pledge to undertake greater emission reductions with higher costs. The pledges fall in the lower end of the distributions of the social cost of carbon and the cost-minimizing path to limiting warming to 2 °C, suggesting insufficient global ambition in light of leaders’ climate goals. Countries’ marginal abatement costs vary by two orders of magnitude, illustrating that large efficiency gains are available through joint mitigation efforts and/or carbon price coordination. Marginal costs rise almost proportionally with income, but full policy costs reveal more complex regional patterns due to terms of trade effects.
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