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Obama hopeful of comprehensive climate change deal in Paris: WH

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Washington: US President Barack Obama is buoyed up by the commitments made by countries that account for 90 per cent of the world’s greenhouse-gas emissions and hopeful of a comprehensive agreement on climate change in the upcoming Paris Summit, the White House has said.

“The President is optimistic…Based on the significant contributions and commitments that have been made by countries around the world,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily news conference.

These countries, he said, together account for about 90 per cent of the carbon that’s emitted around the world, and that represents a substantial starting point for negotiations that could yield an important agreement.

“But ultimately the US wants to see the kind of agreement that is both ambitious but also verifiable. There will be a lot of ups and downs during the days of the Paris summit on climate change. I think everybody who is participating in the conference understands the stakes are high,” he said.

“There is an opportunity for the world to do something important to fight climate change and to reduce carbon pollution in a way that has positive consequences for the health of our kids and for our economy.

“We know that the kinds of investments that the United States has already made in clean and renewable energy are likely to become more valuable as other countries follow through on their commitment to consider alternative sources of energy,” Earnest said.

The State Department spokesman also said the US is partnering with India on responsible energy development.

“India is a strategic partner that has one of the largest economies in the world and it recognises the critical importance of increasing energy security, reducing emissions, and improving resilience in the face of climate change,” he said.