French President Secures Climate Pact with China

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China and France agreed to review cuts in greenhouse gas emissions every five years on Monday in Beijing,to push for long-term monitoring to combat climate change during a summit set to take place in Paris. Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed the timetable with summit host French President Francois Hollande, who is visiting China, as part of a joint plan to put the world economy “onto a low-carbon path in the course of this century”.

A joint statement issued in the name of the two presidents limited the agreement to “a full review every five years of the progress made in order to reach the agreed long-term goals.”More than 150 nations have issued national plans for curbing greenhouse gas emissions until 2025 or 2030 in the run-up to the summit. But a draft text of the Paris deal is unclear about how the pledges will be tracked.

The United Nations says that it is already clear the pledges by all governments to shift from fossil fuels will be insufficient to get on track to limit rising temperatures to a U.N. goal of 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times.

According to the United Nations it is important to have a mechanism increase action after Paris to check in emissions, blamed by the U.N.’s climate science panel for droughts, heat waves, downpours and rising sea levels.

The support of China, the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, is significant to any global deal to combat climate change.

In the joint declaration, the two presidents also declared their intention to release their own national strategies to develop low-carbon economies by 2050 as soon as possible within the next five years.

Environmental campaign group Greenpeace called the statement “an incremental step forward” and said work still needs to be done to raise ambition before and during the Paris conference.

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