A small section of the atoll that has slipped beneath the water line only showing a small pile of rocks at low tide on Majuro Atoll in the Marshall Islands Nov. 8, 2015. (AP/Rob Griffith)
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The Marshall Islands, a Pacific archipelago highly exposed to climate-induced sea level rise, said Tuesday it was the first country to ratify a global pact to phase out planet-warming gases called HFCs.The Kigali Amendment on ending hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) was agreed by nearly 200 countries in the Rwandan capital last October, after years of talks. The world's nations agreed in Paris in 2015 to limit average global warming to two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-Industrial Revolution levels in a treaty that the Marshall Islands was also among the first to ratify.Experts say eliminating HFCs -- not covered by the Paris Agreement -- could help prevent as much as 0.5 C of warming.
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