The US and China have committed to implementing the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol and phase down the production and consumption of HFCs.

The announcement, which included long-term commitments to the Paris Agreement, developed following meetings between US special presidential envoy for climate John Kerry and his Chinese opposite number Xie Zhenhua in Shanghai.

In a joint statement, the two countries “committed to cooperating” with each other and other countries to tackle the climate crisis. They said: “Must be addressed with the seriousness and urgency that it demands”.

They pledged to enhance their actions and cooperate in multilateral processes, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement. They agreed to develop their respective long-term strategies aimed at net-zero GHG emissions/carbon neutrality before November’s COP 26 meeting in Glasgow.

In many “short term” measures, the two countries also agreed to implement the phase-down of HFC production and consumption as reflected in the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol.

The joint US/China statement came just hours after Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to accept the Kigali Amendment in a video summit with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Under the Kigali Amendment, countries agree to cut the production and consumption of HFCs by more than 80% over the next 30 years. So far, 118 countries, as well as the EU, have ratified the document but, amongst the major producers and users, China, the USA and India have, so far, been notable exceptions.

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