13 November, 2014

China and US increase climate ambition

After assessing US and China's recent emission reduction pledges, the Climate Action Tracker finds that improvements needed in 2015.

The Climate Action Tracker has undertaken an initial assessment of the recent announcements by the United States and China’s new pledges and proposals on emissions reductions for 2025 and 2030, in the context of the present international negotiations for a new climate agreement to be adopted at the end of 2015.

The announcement of increased ambition by the biggest emitters China and the United States one year ahead of the Paris Climate Summit in 2015 is a very important political development. It begins to close the gap between their previous pledges and the emissions limits needed to hold global warming below 2°C.

It is clear however that both could significantly improve over these new pledges. Adopting world best practice would enable substantial improvements, as outlined in the Climate Action Tracker’s update last month, where we looked at the potential for both countries.

“These pledges give scope for further improvement during 2015. But for both countries, the increasing challenge now is to match the pledges with policy action,” said Bill Hare of Climate Analytics.

“Both move closer to a pathway that is compatible with 2°C but would need to increase ambition” says Niklas Höhne, NewClimate Institute.

“This is a very positive development but needs on-the-ground implementation from both countries to ensure they contribute sufficiently to safeguarding our climate,” Kornelis Blok, Director of Science at Ecofys, concludes.

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