China Briefing, 16 September 2021: Xi and Biden discuss climate; Johnson’s ‘last-ditch’ talks with Xi; Advice for China’s carbon goals

WHAT: Boris Johnson “is planning to assemble desperate climate talks” with Xi at “a crunch conference of world leaders” next week, the Guardian reported in an “exclusive” last Friday. Xi will be invited to the conference on the sidelines of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA76), according to the newspaper. At last years UN General Assembly, Xi promised that China would accomplish “carbon neutrality” before 2060..

On the other hand, UK prime minister Boris Johnson is planning “last-ditch” environment talks with Xi in the hope of “breaking the international deadlock on climate action” ahead of COP26, the Guardian reported. Simply recently, Alok Sharma, president-designate for COP26, was in China for conferences to make sure a successful outcome of the environment top.

WHY IT MATTERS: “Chinas participation and pro-active and enthusiastic engagement” would be one of the most significant determinants of an effective COP26, according to a post from the British Foreign Policy Group, a London-based thinktank. Jennifer Morgan, the executive director of Greenpeace International, revealed similar opinions. She informed the Guardian that China was important to hopes of success at COP26. At the end of his China see, Sharma likewise stated that “the choices that China makes, on their energy mix, and on coal particularly, will form our shared future”. However, Reuters reported that Chinas hard position throughout current environment talks with the United States and UK “might undermine development” at the Glasgow summit, according to professionals. Li Shuo, senior environment and energy policy officer at Greenpeace East Asia, informed the newswire: “Amid all the unpredictabilities, one thing has actually ended up being clear– Beijing will not succumb to foreign powers.”.

Other news.

PANDA POWER: A sprawling “panda-shaped” solar plant in Shanxi province can now generate adequate electrical energy for more than 100,000 people for a year, Xinhua reported. The calculation is based upon Chinas per-capita electrical power usage last year, which was 780 kilowatt hours, the state newswire said. The plants solar panels are carefully set up to reveal the image of 2 giant pandas while seen from above.

ABROAD COAL: A research study report suggested that Chinas Belt and Road Initiative ought to put coal-mining tasks and coal-fired power plants on an “elimination list” and “slowly stop such abroad investment tasks”. The report was released by a forum run by CCICED last Wednesday.

EXTREME WEATHER: A paper has actually evaluated the relationship between the roofing systems of conventional Chinese architecture and severe snow occasions over the past 1,000 years. The Conversation, Chinas Science Times and Sixth Tone featured the study.

United States COVERAGE: The New York Times reported that the Biden administrations authorities had provided “extremely couple of information from the call”. However it said that Biden emphasised “the requirement to mitigate climate modification” to Xi, citing “authorities”. Los Angeles Times composed: “The White House is hopeful the 2 sides can work together on problems of shared concern– including environment change and avoiding a nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula– despite growing distinctions”. CNBC, CNN and the Washington Post reported that Xi named climate modification to Biden as one of the areas of possible cooperation. All three outlets pointed out Chinese state media. Bloomberg said that Biden urged Xi “to make a distinction between concerns for cooperation like climate change and those for competition like human rights and trade”.

OUTRIGHT CAP: The China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development (CCICED), a government-approved advisory body, stated that China required to develop mechanisms to control outright emission levels and impose caps on private provinces and markets, according to Reuters. CCICED is chaired by Han Zheng, Chinas vice-premier, according to its site. The advice was among a list of suggestions released by the organisation last Thursday, Reuters included.

WHEN: The Xi-Biden call occurred last Friday Beijing time (Thursday United States time). It came a week after Bidens environment envoy, Kerry, finished his three-day visit to Tianjin, throughout which he consulted with his Chinese equivalent, Xie Zhenhua, and a variety of senior officials. Wang Yi, Chinas foreign minister, told Kerry that it would be “impossible” to separate environment concerns from total China-US ties– a direction the Biden administration had sought. The two sides reportedly “stopped working to reach contract”. (Read more about Kerrys check out in this China Briefing from earlier this month)..

New science.

WHEN: The Guardian stated that the conference would take place on 20 September in the hope of “breaking the global deadlock on climate action” ahead of COP26. It noted that the meeting would be attended by leaders from around 30 countries and co-hosted by António Guterres, the UN secretary general. Guterres told journalists last Friday:” [O] ne of the reasons Im convening … a top … is exactly to make an effort to construct trust … before COP26.”.

XiS MESSAGES: On the topic of climate change, Xi “stressed that China continues to prioritise ecological conservation and pursues a green and low-carbon course to development”, according to the Chinese transcript.

Elsewhere, an advisory body chaired by Chinas vice-premier has actually advised China to impose an outright cap on its carbon emissions throughout the 2021 to 2025 period to assist meet its climate targets, Reuters reported. China presently uses emission strength– the volume of emissions per unit of GDP– in its targets for carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

POLICY: Xie Zhenhua, Chinas special envoy on environment, introduced the concepts and content of the countrys upcoming top-level environment action prepare for the very first time at a forum on Saturday, reported Yicai. The strategy, understood as the “1+ N” policy system, will utilize emissions reduction as its “tactical instructions” to promote “a synergy of contamination reduction and carbon decrease” and “a detailed green improvement of financial and social development”, Xie stated, according to the report..

上微信关注 碳简报.

WHY IT MATTERS: “Every solution to climate change goes through Washington and Beijing. Without either nations significant commitment, we are not going to reach our worldwide climate targets,” Michael Davidson, an assistant teacher in the School of Global Policy and Strategy and the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of California, San Diego, informed Carbon Brief. He added: “I still stay confident that with softer rhetoric from both sides, traditional areas of environment change cooperation will be revived … and boosted, high-level exchanges on cleantech trade and confidence-building measures on the reliability of each others long-lasting commitments can take location.”.

A brand-new research study has actually discovered that consecutive “flood-hot” extremes will become more likely in China as the climate warms. The research study included that “traditionally extraordinary sequential extremes might originate from a sequence of fairly moderate floods and hot extremes in the exact same week”. Dr Chen Yang from the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences is the corresponding author of the paper. He informed Carbon Brief: “In the past, these 2 kinds of extremes have been thoroughly examined individually. As the environment warms, nevertheless, they might [clash] in an unanticipated way.” He included: “So we need to foresee their prospective connection, even coincidentally, in magnifying the associated threats and threats and to much better get ready for the future.”.

RATE SURGE: The thermal coal rate is “nearing a record high” due to “surging demand” in China and India, Nikkei Asia reported. The Japan-based outlet said that the spike in demand “hits a hesitation to purchase brand-new capacity”. The news came after a Chinese province reopened dozens of mines– which had actually been ordered to halt their operation due to land-use infractions– to improve coal production and cool coal prices. China Briefing from 26 August explained more.

XI: The Chinese president checked a state-owned chemical business in Yulin, a city in the northern province of Shaanxi, to find out about the “comprehensive utilisation of coal” on Monday morning. He advised authorities and workers that the energy market “should continue to develop” to “support the nations modernisation”. Xi directed them to “transform and upgrade” its coal and energy development “to stroll the green, low-carbon developmental course”. Xinhua reported the story. CCTV aired a clip of Xis speech.

Key advancements.

Welcome to Carbon Shorts China weekly digest. We handpick and describe the most crucial environment and energy stories from China over the previous seven days.

This is an online version of Carbon Briefs weekly China Briefing email newsletter. Subscribe free of charge here.

Growing dangers from unmatched consecutive flood-hot extremes across ChinaGeophysical Research Letters.

Chinese president Xi Jinping and United States president Joe Biden talked about environment modification recently in their very first call in 7 months. The discussion came simply a week after John Kerry, Bidens special envoy on climate, concluded his trip to Tianjin for a brand-new round of climate diplomacy with his Chinese equivalent and senior authorities.

WHAT: Xi and Biden talked about climate change on the phone last week in their first discussion considering that February. Xi “elaborated on” Chinas position on environment change and other key problems to Biden, a transcript from the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated. A readout of the call from the White House did not specify environment change as a subject.

WHO: Johnson has actually personally welcomed Xi to come to COP26, according to a previous report. Bloomberg reported last Thursday that Xi– who has not left China for more than 600 days– had actually not validated his participation, mentioning a “senior European diplomat”. Last Wednesday, a UK government spokesperson stated that COP26s Covid-secure efforts “create space that Xi Jinping might come”, including that “we will discover out quickly”.

Xi and Biden talk about environment change throughout call.


UNGA76: Bernice Lee, research study director at Chatham House, a London-based thinktank focused on worldwide affairs, told Carbon Brief: “President Xi made a crucial announcement last year throughout UNGA, which supplied a much-needed increase to global climate diplomacy. (Xi has not left China for the assembly, as of writing.

Johnson plans desperate environment talks with Xi, report states.

STATE MEDIA: A comment piece from China News Service highlighted that Xi had “offered responses” to “the question of the century” that is Sino-China relationship. It highlighted that climate modification must not be treated as a standalone issue. Xinhua Daily Telegraph reported that there were “three keywords” from the call. One of them was “regard” as it was the “standard precondition” of any potential China-US collaboration, it stated. Global Times reported that, according to “analysis”, China and the United States “will likely have substantive conversation” over issues consisting of the environment. It included: “But [regarding] whether or not an agreement will be reached, the key will depend upon if the US touches the three bottom lines China has raised formerly.” (The “3 bottom lines” are “three standard demands” China has provided to the US to push forward their relations. This release from the Chinese foreign ministry has actually explained what they are.).

Extra reading.

NEV: Both the production and sales of “brand-new energy” vehicles (NEVs) tripled in China from January to August this year, compared to the very same duration last year. The two figures stood at 1,813,000 and 1,799,000, in order. Xiao Yaqing, the minister of industry and infotech, provided the details at an interview on Monday. In the first 8 months of 2020, 602,000 and 596,000 NEVs were produced and sold, respectively, in the nation..

Please email any feedback or pointers to [email safeguarded]

Xi “elaborated on” Chinas position on environment modification and other crucial problems to Biden, a records from the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated. XiS MESSAGES: On the topic of environment modification, Xi “stressed that China continues to prioritise eco-friendly preservation and pursues a green and low-carbon course to development”, according to the Chinese transcript. Global Times reported that, according to “analysis”, China and the US “will likely have substantive discussion” over issues including the environment. At the end of his China go to, Sharma also stated that “the options that China makes, on their energy mix, and on coal specifically, will form our shared future”. ABSOLUTE CAP: The China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development (CCICED), a government-approved advisory body, said that China needed to establish mechanisms to control absolute emission levels and enforce caps on individual provinces and industries, according to Reuters.