US President Barack Obama (R) and Chinese President Xi Jinping take a walk at the Annenberg Retreat in Rancho Mirage, California, on June 8, 2013. As part of their talks, China agreed Saturday with the United States to scale back production of "super greenhouse gases" used in refrigerators and air conditioners in a joint bid to fight climate change.
China agreed Saturday with the United States to scale back production of "super greenhouse gases" used in refrigerators and air conditioners in a joint bid to fight climate change.
The two nations made the pledge after a closely watched first summit between Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping, who lead the world's top two emitters of greenhouse gases blamed for the planet's increasingly volatile climate.
In a statement, China and the United States "agreed to work together" through an international body to "phase down the production and consumption" of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), dubbed super greenhouse gases for their pollution.
The White House said that a global phasedown of HFCs could reduce carbon emissions by 90 gigatons by 2050—equivalent to around two full years worth of the world's greenhouse gas emissions.
China—by far the largest producer of HFCs—had until recently resisted efforts by the United States and other wealthy nations to scale back the super greenhouse gases, arguing that alternatives in appliances were not fully ready.
But China agreed in April to end HFC production by 2030 as part of a $385 million assistance package by wealthy countries under the Montreal Protocol, which was set up to fight the depletion of the ozone layer.
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