The United Nations' aviation arm overwhelmingly ratified an agreement Thursday to control global warming emissions from international airline flights, the first climate-change pact to set worldwide limits on a single industry.
The agreement, adopted overwhelmingly by the 191-nation International Civil Aviation Organization at a meeting in Montreal, sets airlines' carbon emissions in the year 2020 as the upper limit of what carriers are allowed to discharge. Airlines that exceed that limit in future years, as most are expected to do, will have to offset their emissions growth by buying credits from other industries and projects that limit greenhouse gas emissions.
Countries must still act on their own to put the agreement's limits into effect. Adoption of the aviation agreement comes one day after the number of countries signing onto a landmark climate-change accord reached in Paris last December passed the threshold for implementing the accord.