Paris Agreement: As U.S. steps back, France & China step forwards

As the United States makes its first formal step to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, the Presidents of France and China are set to sign a text that mentions the "irreversibility" of the accord.

Emmanuel Macron and Xi Jiingping will sign the agreement together on Wednesday, an official from the French presidential office said, adding that France feels "regret" over the behaviour of the US.

Speaking to reporters in Shanghai, the official said: "We regret this and this only makes the Franco-Chinese partnership on the climate and biodiversity more necessary.

"The text that will be signed tomorrow includes a paragraph on the irreversibility of the Paris agreement."

Macron, who is currently in Shanghai as part of his state visit to China, will meet with his Chinese counterpart on Wednesday.

He spoke at a trade fair in the city on Tuesday shortly after a keynote speech from Xi, and said the cooperation between the EU and China was "decisive" and urged for commitments to be "enhanced".

"If we want to be in compliance with the Paris agreement, we will need next year to enhance our commitments to reduce emissions, and we must confirm new commitments for 2030 and 2050," he said.

"The cooperation between China and the European Union in this respect is decisive. Next year, we need, in the agenda of enhancement, to be collectively up to the task."

Related articles: 

European Parliament committee calls for more money to fight climate change 

Thousands back "Sign for my Future" campaign in call for climate action in Belgium 

World's youth call for strong climate action, governments must listen 

Mont Blanc glacier facing collapse

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Gary Cartwright

Gary Cartwright

Gary Cartwright is publishing editor of EU Today.

An experienced journalist and published author, he specialises in environment, energy, and defence.

He also has more than 10 years experience of working as a staff member in the EU institutions, working with political groups and MEPs in various policy areas.

Gary's latest book WANTED MAN: THE STORY OF MUKHTAR ABLYAZOV: A Manual for Criminals on How to Avoid Punishment in the EU is currently available from Amazon

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