BERLIN, Nov 12, 2014 (AFP) - UN climate chief Christiana Figueres on Wednesday hailed a landmark agreement between the United States and China on reducing greenhouse emissions as a significant boost towards a global accord.
At a Beijing summit, the leaders of the world's two biggest polluters agreed an action plan against global warming, ahead of international talks in Paris next year.
The head of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) organising those negotiations, Figueres, said she saw "determination towards addressing the climate change challenge from a growing number of key economies".
"This joint announcement provides both practical and political momentum towards a new, universal climate agreement in Paris in late 2015," Figueres said in a statement from the UNFCCC's headquarters in the western German city of Bonn.
China and the US, which together produce around 45 percent of the world's carbon dioxide emissions, will be key to ensuring a global deal on reducing emissions after 2020 is reached next year.
President Xi Jinping set a target for China's greenhouse gas output to peak "around 2030", while US President Barack Obama set a goal for the United States to cut its own emissions by 26-28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025.
The European Union pledged in October to slash its emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030 over 1990 levels.