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Mexico to stop increasing emissions by 2026

Mexican officials are pledging that the country’s greenhouse gas emissions will hit a peak in 2026 and fall after that.

The peak, followed by a 22 percent drop in pollutants by 2030, is Mexico’s official contribution that it is offering as part of the United Nations’ negotiations on an international agreement to fight climate change.

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Mexico’s secretariat of foreign affairs announced the commitment Friday, making Mexico the first developing country to publicize a reduction goal in the run-up to the final negotiations this December in Paris.

“Mexico is a country committed to address climate change, as demonstrated by the mitigation and adaptation actions undertaken over the last few years in a systematic way and supported mainly with national resources,” Mexico’s government said in a statement.

“In the international arena, Mexico has expressed its willingness to achieve a legally binding agreement with the participation of all parties in order to keep the global average atmospheric temperature below 2 degrees Celsius,” it said.

The country’s leaders also agreed to form a bilateral task force with the United States on clean energy and climate policy, chaired by the countries' energy secretaries.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest applauded Mexico's announcement.

“Mexico is setting an example for the rest of the world by submitting an INDC that is timely, clear, ambitious, and supported by robust, unconditional policy commitments,” he said in a statement.

“In particular, Mexico’s target to peak its emissions by 2026 and drive them down thereafter is a landmark step in the global transition to a low-carbon economy,” Earnest said.

Mexico said its commitment means that it will decouple greenhouse gas increases from economic growth and that emissions compared to gross domestic product will fall 40 percent.

The country said it would increase its greenhouse gas reduction by 40 percent if world leaders come to an international pact that includes a worldwide price on carbon dioxide emissions, adjustments in the price for goods and services sold across borders, technological assistance and other requests.