US China climate deal prods others to act

2014-11-12 13:10
US President Barack Obama and China's President Xi Jinping shake hands following a bilateral meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (Mandel Ngan, AFP)

US President Barack Obama and China's President Xi Jinping shake hands following a bilateral meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. (Mandel Ngan, AFP)

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Beijing - A groundbreaking agreement struck by the United States and China is putting the world's two worst polluters on a faster track to curbing heat-trapping gases blamed for global warming.

With the clock ticking on a worldwide climate treaty, the two countries are seeking to put their history as environmental adversaries behind them in hopes other nations will be spurred to take equally aggressive action.

The US is setting an ambitious goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions. China is agreeing for the first time to a deadline for when its emissions will top out.

The dual announcements unveiled on Wednesday in Beijing shocked environmentalists who feared China's reluctance and Obama's weakened political standing might make it impossible.

Republicans were equally surprised and accused Obama of dumping an unrealistic obligation on his successor.
Read more on:    xi jinping  |  barack obama  |  us  |  china  |  climate change

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