BEIJING — China and the United States made common cause on Wednesday against the threat of climate change, staking out an ambitious joint plan to curb carbon emissions as a way to spur nations around the world to make their own cuts in greenhouse gases.
The landmark agreement, jointly announced here by President Obama and President Xi Jinping, includes new targets for carbon emissions reductions by the United States and a first-ever commitment by China to stop its emissions from growing by 2030.
For more on this story, visit: U.S. and China Reach Climate Accord After Months of Talks – NYTimes.com.
The United States and China have unveiled a secretly negotiated deal to reduce their greenhouse gas output, with China agreeing to cap emissions for the first time and the US committing to deep reductions by 2025.
For more on this story, visit: US and China strike deal on carbon cuts in push for global climate change pact | Environment | The Guardian.
This post originally ran on Juan Cole’s Web page.
The good news is that US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping have reached an agreement on limiting carbon emissions in their two countries.
The US puts out 5.5 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide a year, and China does 7 – 9 billion. The US did 5 billion metric tons in 1990 but went on up to 5.5 in 1996 and 6 in the mid-zeroes.
The US just agreed to reduce carbon emissions to as much as 28% below 2005 levels by 2025. But US emissions increased from 5 bn tons a year in 1990 to 6 bn in 2005, an increase of 20 percent. So the US is still only committed to being slightly below 1990 levels by 2025. In other words, it will go on spewing an average of 5 bn metric tons a year into the atmosphere, the equivalent of tacking a dump in your kitchen sink, for over a decade into the future, getting down to like 4.5 billion metric tons in a decade. This is as close to doing nothing about the crisis as you could get. It is twice as ambitious a goal as the previous one in the US, but this is a country of oilmen and climate change denialists who really do want to increase emissions.
For more on this story, visit: Juan Cole: A Day Late and a Dollar Short: Obama and China Agree on Languid Climate Goals – Juan Cole – Truthdig.
A secretly negotiated agreement between the US and China to lower greenhouse-gas output faced a wall of opposition on Wednesday from Republicans in Washington, who threatened to use their control of both houses of Congress to thwart the plan.
Under the deal, unveiled unexpectedly in Beijing early on Wednesday, China committed for the first time to cap its output of carbon pollution by 2030. Beijing also promised to increase its use of zero-emission energy sources, such as wind and solar power, to 20% by 2030.
For more on this story, visit: US-China climate deal boosts global talks but Republicans vow to resist | Environment | The Guardian.
This week’s stunning announcement of a long-range agreement between the Obama administration and the Chinese government over carbon emissions is the best environmental news in years. Not to sound grandiose, it means the world still has a chance to save itself from unmitigated disaster.
The significance of the accord, which was doggedly pursued by Secretary of State John Kerry, is not just that the world’s two biggest emitters of greenhouse gases have agreed to take action. China’s ambitious target of generating 20 percent of its energy from sources other than fossil fuels by 2030 promises massive investment and innovation—a huge boost for clean-energy technologies, with impact worldwide.
For more on this story, visit: Eugene Robinson: An Accord the Planet Needed – Truthdig.