COP27: China Ponders Climate Compensation Mechanism

Image copyright: AP [via Al Jazeera]

The Facts

  • Speaking at the COP27 climate conference in Egypt on Wednesday, China's climate envoy Xie Zhenhua said his nation would be willing to help create a mechanism to help poorer countries negatively impacted by climate change. However, he noted that China has no obligation to do so.

  • Xie's statement comes after China said it would halt all climate dialogue with the US in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Taiwan in August. This development occurred despite a US-China deal at COP26 in Glasgow last year.

The Spin

Pro-China narrative

Despite still being behind the US and Europe in its economic evolution, China has already decreased its annual energy intensity and carbon emissions. With developed countries still failing to fulfill their decade-old promise to contribute $100B per year to mitigation efforts, it's only reasonable to ask them to step up before calling on China to do more.

Anti-China narrative

As a nation supposedly in tune with global economic trends, China should be on board with the US in its plan to protect poor countries facing climate-related disasters. The PRC should break down its barriers to dialogue and come to the table. Beijing is a massive emitter of greenhouse gasses, but there are opportunities to discuss opportunities for global green energy investments to benefit all parties too.

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