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Climate Cooperation: Action from US-Brazil Bilateral, China, and South Korea

Last Tuesday, two of the world’s top 10 greenhouse gas emitters stepped forward in a bilateral meeting to announce a new, joint effort towards sustainability and climate consciousness. In the US-Brazil bilateral, Barack Obama and Dilma Rousseff agreed to increase each nation’s share of renewable power to 20% by the year 2030. Brazil also pledged to restore up to 12m hectares of forest, acknowledging the importance of reforestation and environmental protection in combating climate change.

These initiatives are a continuation in the international community’s growing cooperative spirit in the fight against climate change.

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On the same day as the bilateral, China and South Korea also released independent announcements solidifying their emissions commitments and reductions. China’s announcement on Tuesday was a formal affirmation of climate goals established duringlast November’s US-China meeting. Mirroring the theme of the US-Brazil summit, China’s goals, which are now officially filed with the United Nations, include the intention transition 20% of primary energy sources to non-fossil fuels by 2030. Likewise, South Korea committed to reduce its emissions by 37% by 2030.

These pledges, from both developed and developing countries, represent the increasing call for action on the national and international scale. Our environment and climate cannot be saved by wealthy, developed nations alone. We need everyone to take collaborative and substantial action in order to control the damage that has been done and prevent any further acceleration of climate change.

We are proud to see leaders and representatives across the world acknowledging the need for climate policy as we near the COP21 climate forum, and we call for other nations to join in and further the efforts of the global community.

Julie Hu, Intern