Turkey finally ratifies Paris climate agreement but protests key detail

Presidential honor guard officers walk as Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends a ceremony at the parliament in capital, Ankara, on July 15, 2021.

Istanbul (CNN)Turkey became the last G20 nation to ratify the Paris climate agreement on Wednesday, almost six years after initially signing it, but at the same time, lawmakers protested a key detail -- the country's classification as a developed nation.

Turkish environment and urbanization minister Murat Kurum said Wednesday that lawmakers had voted unanimously in favor of ratifying the agreement, just weeks before world leaders convene in the Scottish city of Glasgow for crucial talks on climate.
Kurum said on Twitter that he hoped the decision would help the country achieve net zero by 2053. Net zero is where the amount of greenhouse gases emitted is no greater than the amount removed from the atmosphere.
    The Paris Agreement, adopted by nearly 200 nations, commits participants to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and, if possible, below 1.5 degrees. Each country is responsible for developing its own plan for achieving those goals.
      Turkey was one of just a handful of signatory countries that had not yet ratified the pact. It had held out for years because the government opposed Turkey being listed under Annex I -- a category for industrialized nations -- which means the country is obliged to do more on climate than developing nations.
      While lawmakers backed the Paris Agreement -- which calls Turkey an industrialized nation -- they also adopted a statement saying they were ratifying the deal as a developing country, and would only implement it if it did not "harm its right to economic and social development."
      Ümit Şahin, coordinator of Climate Change Studies at Istanbul Policy Center, said that the Paris Agreement did not allow for any such conditions to be imposed on it. That mean