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China will resist becoming climate change leader

Monday, June 26, 2017

Subject

China's climate change policy after US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement.

Significance

Beijing is seen as a potential global leader on climate change following US President Donald Trump’s June 2 announcement that Washington will pull out from Paris Agreement. China, the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitter, has already won applause simply by promising to honour existing commitment to the international climate accord.

Impacts

  • China prefers to aid developing countries through its South-South fund, so it is unlikely to contribute to the Green Climate Fund.
  • Concerns over competitiveness, especially in export industries, will weaken the national carbon trading scheme due to launch this year.
  • China will negotiate energy sector deals with the United States on economic criteria rather than environmental or climate impacts.
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