Suspension of US-China climate talks puts global efforts at risk

Just as the US passed the USD 430 billion Inflation Reduction Act to tackle climate change among other major issues, China has suspended Sino-US collaboration on global warming. Details are not yet available, but the impact on global de-carbonisation could be substantial, especially if last November’s Joint Glasgow Declaration by the world’s largest CO2 emitters is at stake.  

The declaration is a comprehensive agreement for the two countries to cooperate on issues including environmental standards, a regulatory framework, greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing climate control. With China accounting for some 31% of global emissions and the US for about 14%,2 slowing climate change will be impossible without China’s contribution and, more importantly, without the countries cooperating.

China halted talks on climate change as part of its escalating retaliation over visits to Taiwan by House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other US politicians.3 The suspension came less than 100 days before the next United Nations Climate Change Conference due to be held this November (COP-27).

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