It was fireworks at the UN meeting on Wednesday as US President Donald Trump went after China in a speech to the UN General Assembly, claiming Beijing and the WHO falsely declared that there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus.
Xi Jinping warned the pandemic should not be politicised and surprised the assembly by pledging China would reach zero carbon emissions by 2060, a major commitment that could put pressure on other polluters.
Xi’s announcement during a speech Tuesday to the UN General Assembly is a significant step for the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases.
Calling for a “green revolution,” Xi said the coronavirus pandemic had shown the need to preserve the environment.
Citing the Paris Agreement that he and former US President Barack Obama helped forge in 2015, Xi said his country would raise its emissions reduction targets with “vigorous policies and measures.”
Many countries have pledged they will aim to go carbon neutral by 2050, including the European Union. The United States has so far not set such a goal. President Trump, who once describing climate change as a hoax invented by China, has started the process of pulling the US out of the Paris accord.