Wednesday, April 17, 2013

US and China admit to 'inadequate' climate action as UN warns of mounting threat

James Murray in Business Green: The US and China have announced plans to accelerate joint efforts to tackle climate change, warning that the "inadequacy of the global response requires a more focused and urgent initiative".

The two countries issued a joint statement at the end of Secretary of State John Kerry's visit to Beijing over the weekend, featuring some of the strongest wording on the need for action on climate change to emanate from either government.

"Both sides consider that the overwhelming scientific consensus regarding climate change constitutes a compelling call to action crucial to having a global impact on climate change," the statement read, adding that they recognise the threat presented by "the sharp rise in global average temperatures over the past century, the alarming acidification of our oceans, the rapid loss of Arctic sea ice, and the striking incidence of extreme weather events occurring all over the world".

"Both sides recognize that, given the latest scientific understanding of accelerating climate change and the urgent need to intensify global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, forceful, nationally appropriate action by the United States and China - including large-scale cooperative action - is more critical than ever," it added. "Such action is crucial both to contain climate change and to set the kind of powerful example that can inspire the world."

Crucially, the two governments also acknowledged the wide-ranging economic, political and security benefits that come with the shift to a low carbon economy. "Both sides also noted the significant and mutual benefits of intensified action and cooperation on climate change, including enhanced energy security, a cleaner environment, and more abundant natural resources," the statement read....

The "blue marble" shot from NASA


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