On Wednesday, the Obama administration announced one more milestone, a new climate agreement between the two countries (that contribute to a combined 40% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions) that will ambitiously cut emissions and start to tackle the climate problem.
This week marked some serious developments in the relationship between the U.S. and China. Monday broadcasted a new visa agreement between the two countries, and on Tuesday the announcement of a new tariff policy and bilateral investment treaty took place. On Wednesday, the Obama administration announced one more milestone, a new climate agreement between the two countries (that contribute to a combined 40% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions) that will ambitiously cut emissions and start to tackle the climate problem.
The U.S. has pledged to double the pace of emission reduction, to a quarter of what is was in 2005 by 2025. China ensures it’s greenhouse gas output peaks by 2030, while increasing sustainable energy to 20% of it’s energy by 2030. This is the first ever cap on CO2 limits set by the Chinese government. The secretly negotiated deal comes as at a landmark time, with the United Nations climate meeting in Paris set for next year. The deal with undoubtedly have an international effect on climate. The European Union has already pledged a 40% reduction from greenhouse gases by 2030.
Naturally, this has already called detractors from the GOP. As reported by USA Today, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the next majority leader, calls the plan unrealistic, and "would ensure higher utility rates and far fewer jobs. Our economy can't take the president's ideological War on Coal that will increase the squeeze on middle-class families and struggling miners.”
The U.S. has pledged to double the pace of emission reduction, to a quarter of what is was in 2005 by 2025. China ensures it’s greenhouse gas output peaks by 2030, while increasing sustainable energy to 20% of it’s energy by 2030. This is the first ever cap on CO2 limits set by the Chinese government.
The International Energy Agency has reports that contradict McConnell. Coal in U.S. plants has declined, and many companies and utilities are now operating with natural gas, which is cheaper.
China, currently the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, makes this pledge as something more than just impressive for history. As quoted by The Guardian, a White House source said, “It will require China to deploy an additional 800-1,000 gigawatts of nuclear, wind, solar and other zero-emission generation capacity by 2030 – more than all the coal-fired power plants that exist in China today and close to total current electricity generation capacity in the United States.”
This is particularly interesting during that only yesterday, an article was published regarding the Chinese government’s censorship on the Weather, due to the large air pollution.
Censorship message in updated china air quality index app. pic.twitter.com/baFTNvqcRk— Bill Bishop (@niubi) November 12, 2014
Despite previous tensions between the countries, especially during the press coverage during the 2009 climate treaty in Copenhagen, the new deal has far reaching advantages. Not only is China now bound by signed paper, it also means that U.S. will likely reduce it’s own emissions up to 80% by 2050, which Secretary of State John Kerry underlines in the New York Times, and is nearing the actual amount needed to have a meaningful impact on environmental change. Lastly, this will likely make the Paris climate talk of next year altogether more successful.
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