China and France Agree to Mandatory Climate Change Progress Review

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During his visit to China, French President Francois Hollande announced in a joint statement with Chinese President Xi Jinping that the two countries agreed to “a full review every five years of the progress made in order to reach the agreed long-term goals” in cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

The two Presidents vowed to ask other countries to do the same as part of the global climate change pact to be negotiated in Paris this December, while additionally aiming to release their national strategies for low-carbon economies by 2050 within the next five years.

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“With this declaration, we have set up conditions which open the way to success and I am minded to believe that an agreement is now possible,” Hollande said about the important signal of China’s willingness to cooperate. He added that today’s announcement will “reinforce mutual confidence and promote efficient implementation.”

Greenpeace called it “an incremental step forward,” as China is considered the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases. The country, however, has made progress in becoming a leader in renewable energies and is committed to capping its still increasing emissions before 2030, according to the Washington Post.

The 21st session of the “Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change” (COP21/CMP11) will be held in Paris from November 30 through December 11.

The main goal of the conference, which will be attended by at least 80 world leaders, is to implement a new international agreement – applicable to all countries – to keep global warming below 2°C (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-Industrial Revolution levels.

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