China and the U.S. shock climate deal throws cautious positivity

Summary

  • The declaration includes a wide range of topics, including reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions as well as preventing illegal deforestation
  • “Tackling the climate problem demands worldwide collaboration and solidarity, and this is a significant step forward,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres

Declaration of coming together for good

LONDON, UK — Many people were caught aback by the United States and China’s joint proclamation. Here, the two countries pledged to collaborate on several climate-related initiatives.

The declaration was made public on Wednesday during the COP26 climate change meeting in Glasgow, Scotland. It included a wide range of problems, from reducing carbon dioxide and methane emissions to combating illegal deforestation.

The countries planned that they put efforts this decade to deal with the targets of Paris climate agreement. These targets, according to the declaration, include keeping global average temperature increases “far below” 2 degrees Celsius and “pursue efforts” to keep them below 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Objectives of the joint declaration

The declaration said, “The 2 sides are focusing exploiting this vital moment to strengthening individual and joint efforts to boost the transition speed to a worldwide net-zero economy.”

“The United States and China’s unexpected and welcome joint announcement reflects a significant commitment between the world’s two greatest emitters of greenhouse emissions,” said Genevieve Maricle, director of US climate policy action.

“They are also the 2 largest economies, which is no less important in this scenario,” Maricle said. “They can unlock massive financial flows from the public and private sectors, accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy.”

“The vow from the two largest economies and greenhouse gas emitters to improve collaboration on clean energy, methane, and deforestation is a positive step forward,” Bapna added.

“However, if we are to keep global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, we must see cooperation agreements translated into more ambitious climate targets and reliable delivery.”

“To address the climate problem, international engagement and solidarity are required, and this is an essential start in the right direction,” Guterres said.

The Challenges seen

“Finding common ground on climate change is a political task,” he remarked. “Bilateral collaboration between the world’s two largest emitters should help the #COP26 negotiations. Now we need to establish a worldwide agreement to keep 1.5 degrees alive.”

The job is enormous, and the United Nations has stated that 1.5 degrees Celsius is “the upper limit” for averting the worst consequences of climate change.

Morgan noted that the US and Chinese statements fell short of the demands of “climate vulnerable countries.” They were “demanding that states return to the table every year with greater ambition until the 1.5C gap is closed.”

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