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US role in spotlight as nations meet on Paris climate deal

– Fossil fuel bans –

Time is ticking, Canete told AFP, as ministers work to narrow their differences and better understand how to implement the ambitious accord — with less than two months to go until the next UN Conference on Climate Change (COP23), in Bonn in November.

“We need a rule book to be able to monitor and verify and compare emissions of all the parties and see how far we are towards the targets,” Canete said, with a goal of having those rules in place in time for the COP24 meeting in Katowice, Poland in late 2018.

Key player China — the world’s largest car market — brings to the table a potentially major advance in transportation after announcing its intention to ban gasoline and diesel-fueled cars, following decisions by France and Britain to outlaw their sale from 2040.

The European Union — which is targeting a 40 percent cut to its emissions by 2030 — will also shortly put forward a proposal to member states on slashing carbon emissions in the transportation sector, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said this week.

And Canada — as the world’s sixth-largest oil producer — insists it is “committed to its international climate obligations,” which it hopes to reach by massively investing in “clean energy” technologies.

China’s special representative to the talks, Xie Zhenhua, said Beijing considers the Montreal Protocol to be a “very effective and efficient” example of multilateral action on the environment — largely because it rested on a broad consensus.

“We should take actions now,” Xie said, “to ensure that we can realize the goals that we have set.”

“The key issue is how we should combine climate actions with economic growth, the protection of people and job creation,” he added.

“If we can combine all these matters we could make Paris agreement a great success.”

 

 

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