Worst pol­luters com­mit

The Star Early Edition - - BUSINESS REPORT -

A ground­break­ing agree­ment struck by the US and China is putting the world’s two worst pol­luters on a faster track to curb­ing the heat-trap­ping gases blamed for global warm­ing. The two coun­tries are seek­ing to put their trou­bled his­tory as en­vi­ron­men­tal ad­ver­saries be­hind them in hopes that other na­tions will be spurred to take equally ag­gres­sive ac­tion. The US, a chief pro­po­nent of the prospec­tive treaty, is set­ting an am­bi­tious new goal to pump less car­bon diox­ide into the air. China agreed for the first time to a self-im­posed dead­line of 2030 for when its emis­sions will top out. It was not clear how ei­ther the US or China would meet their goals, nor whether China’s grow­ing emis­sions un­til 2030 would negate any re­duc­tions in the US. Still, the dual an­nounce­ments from Pres­i­dent Barack Obama and Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping, un­veiled yes­ter­day in Beijing, came as a shock to en­vi­ron­men­tal­ists. In Wash­ing­ton, Repub­li­cans were equally taken aback, ac­cus­ing Obama of dump­ing an un­re­al­is­tic obli­ga­tion on the next pres­i­dent. – Sapa-AP

PHOTO: REUTERS

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