WASHINGTON: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Barack Obama today committed themselves to join the Paris climate change deal this year, which would provide a "significant global momentum" towards implementation of the historic agreement, a top White House official said.
"The US reaffirms its commitment to join the agreement as soon as possible this year. India similarly has begun its processes to work toward this shared objective," the White House said.
Noting that the US and India share common climate and clean energy interests and are close partners in the fight against climate change, the White House said the leadership from both countries helped galvanise global action to combat climate change and culminated in the historic Paris Agreement reached last December.
"Both countries are committed to working together and with others to promote full implementation of the Paris Agreement to address the urgent threats posed by climate change," the White House said after the Oval Office meeting between Obama and Modi.
The Prime Minister is currently on a three-day US visit at the invitation of President Obama.
Climate change was one of the major topics of discussion between the two leaders.
During the meeting, Obama and Modi reiterated their commitment to pursue low greenhouse gas emission development strategies in the pre-2020 period and to develop long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies.
In addition, India and the US "resolved" to work to adopt an HFC amendment in 2016 with increased financial support from donor countries to the Multilateral Fund to help developing countries with implementation, and an ambitious phasedown schedule, under the Montreal Protocol pursuant to the Dubai Pathway, the White House said.
Modi and Obama resolved to work together at the upcoming International Civil Aviation Organisation Assembly to reach a successful outcome to address greenhouse gas emissions from international aviation.
"Further, the two countries will pursue under the leadership of the G20 strong outcomes to promote improved heavy-duty vehicle standards and efficiency in accordance with their national priorities and capabilities," the White House said.
Obama and Modi welcomed the signing of an MOU to Enhance Cooperation on Energy Security, Clean Energy and Climate Change, and an MOU on Cooperation in Gas Hydrates.
Reflecting Modi's call to embrace wildlife conservation as a development imperative, the two leaders also welcomed the signing of an MOU to enhance cooperation on Wildlife Conservation and Combating Wildlife Trafficking.