China ended cooperation with the United States on global warming on Friday, September 1. China expert Antoine Bondaz regretted the decision.
Beijing announced on Friday, Aug. 1, that it would cease cooperation with the United States on several issues, particularly the fight against global warming, in retaliation for US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan. Nevertheless, China and the United States, her two largest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, struck a surprise deal on climate at her COP26 summit in Glasgow last year.
ChinaTaking over the global warming issue with the Taiwan issueChina expert and Strategic Research Foundation researcher Antoine Bondaz lamented on franceinfo on Saturday.
franceinfo: Is this Chinese cessation of dialogue with the US opportunistic or a means of pressure?
Antoine Bondaz: This is opportunistic in the sense that China is voluntarily trying to link the Taiwan issue to other global issues, especially global issues, including global warming. There is China’s willingness to obtain concessions from the United States regarding Taiwan, even though the Americans have not changed their policy toward Taiwan. China’s strategy of putting pressure on the United States actually risks giving China a very bad image of holding the issue of global warming hostage to the issue of Taiwan.
Does the suspension of dialogue mean China will stop tackling climate change?
Then, for the time being, China’s decision should not be over-interpreted. Just because China has suspended climate talks with the United States doesn’t mean it can’t continue its efforts to talk to others.
“The suspension of this dialogue does not mean that tomorrow, for example, China will significantly increase its carbon footprint.”Antoine Bondaz, Researcher, China Expert
Has China already delivered on its promise to become carbon neutral by 2060?
China has acted. In particular, the 14th Five Year Plan included attempts to reduce the energy and carbon intensity of the economy. However, today’s China’s problem is its energy mix, which still relies heavily on coal. Last year, China accounted for her 54% of global coal consumption. In Europe, we often talk about Poland, which makes up her 1% of world coal consumption. China is making great efforts to introduce power generation capacity from renewable energy sources. The country accounts for 25% of the world’s installed solar and wind power capacity, 30% of the hydropower capacity and just under 15% of the nuclear power capacity. Indeed, China has made considerable efforts over the last two decades in terms of producing electricity that does not emit greenhouse gases, but unfortunately it is not enough. What is missing today is a credible Chinese plan – how specifically China will act to achieve her carbon neutrality by 2060. There are some positives. Xi Jinping announced a few months ago that he will reduce his coal consumption from 2025, and this coal issue is vital for China.