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All parties should honour commitment: China

China reminds US of climate change agreement as President Trump rolls back Obama-era regulations

BEIJING: China yesterday called on the US to honour its commitments to tackle climate change, after President Donald Trump moved to roll back American emissions targets set by his predecessor Barack Obama.

"The Paris Agreement was hard-earned. All parties of the international community, including China, had a common consensus on it," a foreign ministry spokesman told reporters at a regular press briefing.

"All parties should conform to the historical trend of the time, seize the opportunity, honour their commitment, take practical and positive actions and implement the agreement."

The comments came after Mr Trump signed an order to review Mr Obama's climate regulations. In a maiden trip to the Environmental Protection Agency, Mr Trump ordered a review of emission limits for coal-fired power plants and eased restrictions on federal leasing for coal production.

He said the measures herald "a new era in American energy and production and job creation".

Environmentalists fear the steps may be a prelude to a US withdrawal from the landmark 2015 Paris climate accord and said the measures will make it difficult, if not impossible, for the US to meet its commitments under that agreement.

Curbing emissions from coal-fired power plants was a pillar of America's commitment to cut carbon emissions by 26-28 per cent by 2025.

China "will honour its obligations 100 per cent" regardless of whether other countries change their policies and "will not change its determination, its goals, and its measures regarding climate change", said the spokesman.

China - a signatory to the Paris accord for curbing global warming - together with the US, are responsible for 40 per cent of the world's emissions, so their participation in the agreement is crucial for its success.

America's coal industry has been in decline, with natural gas, cheap renewable energy, automation and tricky geology making the sooty fuel a less lucrative prospect. - AFP

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