Sunnylands Statement on Enhancing Cooperation to Address the Climate Crisis

Source: CNN, article by Nectar Gan and Ella Nilsen

The United States and China have agreed to resume a working group on climate cooperation and pledged a major ramp-up of renewable energy, the two sides announced ahead of a leaders’ summit in San Francisco, as the world’s two largest polluters seek to overcome their geopolitical tensions to tackle the climate crisis.

China and the US committed to “sufficiently accelerate renewable energy deployment” in their economies until the end of 2030 to speed up “the substitution for coal, oil and gas.” They also pledged to support efforts to “triple renewable energy capacity globally by 2030,” and said they plan to meaningfully reduce emissions from their power sector within this decade.

Both countries agreed to economy-wide reductions of all greenhouse gases in their international climate commitments for 2035, including carbon dioxide, methane and hydrofluorocarbons. The agreement involves attempting to cut emissions in line with keeping global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius – a crucial threshold above which scientists say climate change effects such as heatwaves and droughts will become difficult for humans and entire ecosystems to adapt to.

The Sunnylands statement also comes three weeks before the annual UN climate conference known as COP28, which is being held this year in Dubai. Other countries are frequently watching for signs of cooperation between the world’s two biggest emitters – which can set the tone and pace for the annual conference.