Prof. ST Hsieh
Director, US-China Energy Industry Forum
July 17, 2023
Everyone has to do a better job managing the global climate change crisis. Jack Sullivan says that “China should be pressured on climate issues,” but the US has no “moral authority” on managing global climate change: The last US administration pulled out the Paris Climate Change Accord and the Biden Administration rejoined last year! Who knows what the next US administration will do!
There are different ways to analyze the emission data.
- The US and China are the world largest greenhouse gas emitters in aggregated amount now. But the US per capita emission rate is top of the world with significant opportunities to cut emissions.
- It is well known that climate change is caused by the total amount of greenhouse gas accumulated in the atmosphere. The industrialized nations or the developed nations have contributed to greenhouse emission for more than two hundred years. While China’s modernizations started after 1979.
Instead of pressuring China or any other nation, the US is in the best position to be the global leader of the crusade against greenhouse emissions with consistent policy, effective regulations, best technologies! On the other hand, as the US does not seem to be able to clearly demonstrate her commitment with actions to countering global climate changes, then leave others alone. “Do as I say” does not work!
US envoy Kerry calls for ‘urgent action’ on climate at China talks
Mon, July 17, 2023 at 6:23 AM PDT
US climate envoy John Kerry held four hours of talks with his Chinese counterpart in Beijing on Monday, calling for “urgent action” as the two countries revived stalled diplomacy on reducing planet-warming emissions.
Climate talks between the two biggest greenhouse gas emitters came to a halt last year after Nancy Pelosi, then-speaker of the US House of Representatives, enraged Beijing by visiting self-ruled Taiwan, which China considers to be part of its territory.
Kerry met his Chinese counterpart Xie Zhenhua in Beijing on Monday, with the two men speaking for around four hours, state broadcaster CCTV said.
Both countries “must take urgent action on a number of fronts, especially the challenges of coal and methane pollution,” Kerry wrote in a tweet after the talks.
“The climate crisis demands that the world’s two largest economies work together to limit the Earth’s warming,” Kerry tweeted.
Beijing said after the talks that “climate change is a common challenge faced by all mankind“.
China would “exchange views with the United States on issues related to climate change, and work together to meet challenges and improve the wellbeing of current and future generations”, foreign ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said.
US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told CNN on Sunday Kerry would press Beijing not to “hide behind any kind of claim that they are a developing nation” in order to slow-roll efforts to cut emissions.
“Every country, including China, has a responsibility to reduce emissions,” Sullivan said.
“And the world, I do believe, should step up and encourage — indeed, pressure — China to take far more dramatic action to reduce emissions.”
China has long used its official status as a developing nation to justify its high emissions, with Sullivan saying “there is more work for them to do on that front”.
“Secretary Kerry will make that point when he’s in Beijing,” he said.
– Coordinated efforts –
“The Kerry visit and the resumption of climate interaction underscores the critical importance of coordinated efforts to address the climate crisis,” Chunping Xie, Senior Policy Fellow at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, told AFP in written comments.
“It also demonstrates their shared determination to navigate a complex geopolitical relationship to promote the common good,” said Xie.
As the leading emitter of the greenhouse gases driving climate change, China has pledged to peak carbon emissions by 2030 and achieve complete carbon neutrality by 2060.
President Xi Jinping has also said China will reduce its use of coal from 2026.
China should be pressured on climate issues, Jake Sullivan says
Sun, July 16, 2023 at 6:38 AM PDT
National security adviser Jake Sullivan said Sunday that China should be pressured to “take significant, substantial action“ in reducing emissions and fight climate change.
Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,“ Sullivan said of China: “They should not able to hide behind any kind of claim that they’re a developing nation, to step up to their responsibility. And their responsibility under the Paris climate accord is to take significant, substantial action to reduce emissions on a defined time frame in the near-term.“
CNN host Jake Tapper noted that the United States is facing a number of weather-related crises at the moment, including intense heat waves and major flooding, which have been attributed to climate change. Those seeking to combat climate change have focused on China and India, as developing nations whose policy decisions will be crucial in coming years.
“The world, I do believe, should step up and encourage, indeed, pressure China to take far more dramatic action to reduce emissions,“ Sullivan told Tapper.