The stress points keep piling up between President Biden and Vladimir Putin. Biden agreed that the Russian president is a “killer,” the United States leveled more sanctions, diplomats have been expelled on both sides and the White House has warned Russia about its treatment of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny. But one apparent patch of common ground for dialogue — albeit while thousands of miles apart via video link — is the threat of climate change.

Putin has agreed to take part in a Biden-hosted virtual Leaders Summit on Climate on Thursday with others from around the world, including China’s Xi Jinping. The conference is viewed as Biden putting his personal stamp on the U.S. return to global climate initiatives after the Trump administration’s withdrawal.

The event will provide a low-risk arena for cooperation — and a common foe — for the White House and the Kremlin. In his annual address to the Russian government on Wednesday, Putin set a goal of reducing Russia’s greenhouse emissions below European Union levels in the next 30 years. He also said he will increase fines for industrial polluters.

“If you profited from nature, clean up after yourself,” Putin said, referencing massive toxic spills in the Krasnoyarsk and Irkutsk regions of Siberia last year.

Heather Conley, head of the Europe program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said that the climate summit will provide Washington and Moscow “with a small amount of breathing space to keep channels open on a different topic” and that “both sides are signaling that they want to preserve this space.”