US envoy John Kerry talks climate in Japan before visiting China | News | DW | 31.08.2021

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US envoy John Kerry talks climate in Japan before visiting China

As the US pushes for higher climate goals ahead of the COP26 conference, Japan says it is "extremely important" to press China to further reduce its carbon emissions.

John Kerry and Yoshihide Suga meet in Tokyo

Kerry met Prime Minister Suga for about 15 minutes after conferring with Japanese ministers

United States climate envoy John Kerry on Tuesday met with Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and other top officials in Tokyo for discussions on efforts to fight climate change.

The two countries agreed to continue to work together "to advance the decarbonization of the world," the Japanese government said. 

The US push comes ahead of the COP26 United Nations climate conference in November.

Kerry is also due to fly out to China later in the day, where he is expected to pressure officials on carbon emissions .

"China is the world's biggest carbon emitter and the number two economy as well, and it is extremely important that we encourage China to firmly fulfill its responsibility to match its place," Japan's Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi told a press briefing after meeting Kerry. 

Climate targets and promises

China and the US are the world's largest and second-biggest carbon emitters. Japan is the fifth.

The US has pledged to cut 50% of its emissions by 2030.


In April, Japan has doubled its target for emissions cuts by 2030, promising to reduce its carbon emissions by 46% and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

"Japan made some tough decisions," Kerry told Japanese Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi about the targets.

Koizumi told Kerry that the months leading up to COP26 are "critically important and we need to intensify our efforts to tackle climate change," according to local media.

China has set a goal to reach carbon neutrality by 2060.

In June, Group of Seven leaders vowed to phase out fossil fuel investments. But climate activists said the G7 pledges did not go far enough and lacked enforcement mechanisms.

fb/dj (AFP, AP, Reuters) 

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