Campaigners hail key moment in battle against global warming as presidents Obama and Xi announce deal on eve of G20 summit in Hangzhou.
The United States and China – the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases – have announced they will formally ratify the Paris climate change agreement in a move campaigners immediately hailed as a significant advance in the battle against global warming.
Speaking on Saturday on the eve of the G20 summit in Hangzhou – US president Barack Obama confirmed the long-awaited move – the result of weeks of intense negotiations by Chinese and American officials.
‘Just as I believe the Paris agreement will ultimately prove to be a turning point for our planet I believe that history will judge today’s efforts as pivotal’ said Obama – who was speaking in the presence of the Chinese president Xi Jinping and United Nations secretary general Ban Ki-moon.
Earlier China had announced it would formally ratify the Paris accord with President Xi vowing to ‘unwaveringly pursue sustainable development’.
‘Our response to climate change bears on the future of our people and the well-being of mankind’ Xi said – according to the Associated Press.
Obama said the joint announcement showed how the world’s two largest economies were capable of coming together to fight climate change.
(ed:..key has long argued that for new zealand to do anything to mitigate climate-change would be a waste of time/money if the worlds’ largest polluters weren’t also pitching in..
..what excuse for inaction on his part will he use now..?..)