US, China to be among climate deal signatories

2016-04-01 07:22
French President and African leaders during a press conference at the Elysee Palace after a meeting as part of preparation for the upcoming COP21 Climate Conference in France, November 10, 2015. (Francois Mori, AP)

French President and African leaders during a press conference at the Elysee Palace after a meeting as part of preparation for the upcoming COP21 Climate Conference in France, November 10, 2015. (Francois Mori, AP)

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Washington - The United States and China will be among the nations signing the Paris climate agreement in New York next month, the White House announced on Wednesday, ahead of a meeting between President Barack Obama and Xi Jinping.

Seeking to highlight areas of cooperation amid disputes over the South China Sea and how hard to push back on North Korea's nuclear programme, the White House said both countries would take part in a signing ceremony on April 22.

The two nations will also "take their respective domestic steps in order to join the Agreement as early as possible this year," according to a US statement.

An agreement between Obama and Xi to tackle domestic carbon emissions was seen as a key ingredient of the global accord achieved at a summit last year.

The global accord sets a target of limiting global warming to "well below" 2.0 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels.

But in the United States, Obama still faces a political and legal battle to meet the commitments.

The US Supreme Court has put on hold a sweeping plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fuelled power plants, which was the capstone of Obama's climate reduction initiative.

Read more on:    us  |  china  |  cop21  |  climate change

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