China has laid out specific carbon reduction targets ahead of next month’s Copanhagen climate change summit, the Wall Street Journal reported. The State Council pledged to cut its carbon emissions per unit of GDP produced by 40-45% by 2020 compared to 2005 levels. The goal would be binding and included in the country’s mid- to long-term development plans. The announcement comes a day after the US laid out plans to reduce carbon emissions by 17% on 2005 levels before 2020, and by 83% before 2050. Observers say Beijing’s targets will add to the momentum to reach an agreement in Copenhagen. However, it is also suggested that China’s pledge to cut carbon intensity – which falls short of a promise to reduce total greenhouse gas emissions from current levels – is insufficient, and that the summit won’t deliver a binding international treaty, but rather some loose political commitment.
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