Biden administration opens global climate summit

Lula Sharp
April 22, 2021

China is by far the largest carbon producer and, with the USA, emits around half of the pollution responsible for climate change.

Chinese President Xi Jinping will take part in US President Joe Biden's climate summit being organised virtually on Thursday and Friday in which several world leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will participate.

President Biden is relying on the summit and his promise to lower emissions to mark a turning point.

At the invitation of Biden, President Xi will attend and deliver an "important speech" at the Leaders' Summit on Climate on Thursday by video link from Beijing, the Chinese foreign ministry announced on Wednesday.

Last week, USA climate envoy John Kerry travelled to Shanghai to meet with his Chinese counterpart in the first high-level visit to China by a Biden administration official.

Blast kills 4 at Pakistan hotel reportedly hosting Chinese ambassador
Liaquat Shahwani, a provincial government spokesman. called the bombing an act of terrorism without elaborating. Chinese citizens have come under attack many times in Balochistan, mainly at the hands of Baloch separatists.

Washington and Beijing's pledge to cooperate comes amid acrimony over accusations about China's policies in Hong Kong and its treatment of Uyghurs in its northwestern Xinjiang region - criticisms Beijing rejects as interference in its domestic affairs. The pair released a joint statement over the weekend, saying their two countries "are committed to cooperating with each other" and will take "enhanced climate actions that raise ambition in the 2020s". "The cost of inaction keeps mounting", he said.

China - the world's top carbon emitter - has vowed to reach peak emissions by 2030 and become carbon neutral thirty years later.

The planned U.S. pledge represents a near-doubling of the target that the nation committed to under the 2015 Paris climate agreement, when former president Barack Obama vowed to cut emissions by 26 to 28 per cent compared with 2005 levels, The Washington Post reported.

Beijing has said the U.S. needs to take more responsibility on climate change, with foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying calling Washington's return to the Paris accord "a truant getting back to class". The leaders will discuss how the highest polluting countries can reduce carbon dioxide emissions, financial reform, innovation and making technology like carbon capture cheaper, and the economic benefits of investing in climate solutions.

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