China, US unveil surprise climate pact at COP26 summit

China and the United States on Nov. 10 vowed to work together to accelerate climate action this decade, separately announcing a surprise pact on global warming, which is already causing disasters across the world.

The joint declaration came as the crunch COP26 summit in Glasgow entered its pivotal final days, with negotiators wrestling over ways to limit global warming to 1.5-2 degrees Celsius compared to preindustrial levels.

"This document contains strong statements about the alarming science, the emissions gap, and the urgent need to accelerate action to close that gap," U.S. special envoy John Kerry told reporters.

"It commits to a series of important actions now this decade when it is needed."

The plan is light on concrete targets but heavy on political symbolism at a conference that began with the U.S. and China - the world's two biggest emitters - seemingly at loggerheads.

Last week, U.S. President Joe Biden criticised the decision of President Xi Jinping not to attend the Glasgow summit, accusing China of walking away.

Beijing hit back, but relations appear to have thawed ahead of bilateral talks next week, with Kerry and China's longtime climate envoy Xie Zhenhua each saying they would rise above their differences to work together on climate.

"Both sides recognise that there is a gap between the current effort and the Paris Agreement goals so we will jointly strengthen climate action," Xie said.

Chinese President Xi on Thursday stressed the need for cooperation between the two superpowers, who together account for nearly 40 percent of all carbon emissions.

"All of us can embark on a path of green, low-carbon sustainable development," he told a virtual business conference on the sidelines of...

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