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Biden presses nations to cut methane in climate fight

U.S. President Joe Biden urged world leaders on Friday to join the United States and the European Union in a pledge to cut methane emissions.

The push comes ahead of an international summit on climate change in Glasgow later this year.

"Time is running out."

Biden held a virtual meeting to unveil new U.S. greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and press other countries to do more to curb theirs.

"As part of this work, the United States is committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions between 50 and 52 percent below 2005 levels by the year 2030."

Tackling climate change is one of Biden's top domestic and international priorities.

The U.N. COP26 climate conference in Glasgow from Oct. 31 to Nov. 12 is seen as a critical moment for the world to commit to doing more to halt rising temperatures.

On Friday the president called on other nations to join an agreement between the United States and the EU to aim to reduce global methane emissions by at least 30 percent below 2020 levels by the end of the decade.

"This will not only rapidly reduce the rate of global warming, but it will also produce a very valuable side benefit like improving public health and agricultural output."

Biden has been emphasizing climate change repeatedly in recent weeks in the wake of damage from devastating floods and wildfires across the United States.

But heavy political opposition has forced the administration to put its centerpiece climate proposals into a budget reconciliation bill that has an uncertain future in the closely-divided U.S. Congress.

Democrats, who hope to pass the bill by the end of September, are already talking about paring back investments and targets.

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