Kerry: U.S. and China should set example by agreeing on climate goals

Date: 12/11/2014

The United States and China, the world’s largest carbon emitters, have an opportunity to agree on ambitious targets to reduce climate-warming gas emissions and set the stage for a global deal, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday.

Speaking hours before leaving on a trip that will include Beijing, Kerry said climate change, Iran, North Korea and counter terrorism were areas on which the two major powers could cooperate and agree.

China and the United States appear increasingly willing to reach a deal, even a limited one, in Paris in late 2015 when developed and developing nations are supposed to set goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2020.

“Solutions are within reach but they will require ambitious, decisive and immediate action,” Kerry told an audience at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington.

“We hope that the partnership between China and the United States can help set an example for global leadership and for the seriousness of purpose on those targets and the negotiations overall,” Kerry added, noting that China and the United States together account for close to 50 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions.