John Kerry, the American envoy on climate change, arrived in Beijing to begin climate negotiations with China, but according to Chinese observers, there won’t be any real progress made during the meetings, according to Global Times.
Although observers noted that it would be challenging to let climate negotiations serve as the high-level visits by US officials in recent months to lead the bilateral relations to a manageable status of “no derail,” Kerry’s arrival in Beijing on Sunday opened the door for a potential meeting between higher-level officials.
Kerry said he hoped to advance negotiations with China on cutting back on methane emissions, moving away from coal, halting deforestation, and increasing the use of renewable energy technologies together, according to US media, as he addressed lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Thursday.
Chinese newspaper Global Times covers domestic and international topics affecting China.
Kerry told a subcommittee of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, “What we’re trying to do right now is really to establish some stability.”
Adding, “I’m not going over with any concessions,” he said.
At a time when a warming globe is generating concerns due to the strain of record heat, floods, storms, and wildfires, Kerry’s visit and the two nations’ scheduled climate discussions are timely.
Ma Jun, director of the Beijing-based Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, told the Global Times on Sunday that everyone’s attention is focused on whether the climate talks between China and the US, the two largest emitters in the world, can lead to advancement in aiding in the solution to the more frequent climate disasters.
Kerry will meet with a Chinese official, who China has not yet identified, but according to international media, that person is Xie Zhenhua, China’s special envoy for climate change.
Since Xie and Kerry are both actively working to address climate change and often communicate with one another, Ma predicted that their meeting will result in open, honest dialogue, according to Global Times.
The climate dialogue between the two countries won’t return to where it was in 2021, according to observers who were generally dubious that Kerry’s visit would produce any significant results for climate change cooperation between the two nations.
Kerry reaffirmed during the Senate hearing that the US would not compensate poor nations affected by natural catastrophes caused by climate change.
According to The Global Times, Washington has recently sought to take action against China’s solar panel business. In May of this year, the US Senate decided to impose taxes on solar panels imported into the US from Chinese firms in Southeast Asia that had been shown to be “in violation of trade rules.”
Following US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Kerry’s trip marks the third time in a month that a senior US official has visited China for negotiations.
According to Li Haidong, a professor at the China Foreign Affairs University, the flurry of visits indicates that China and the US are maintaining a healthy momentum of high-level communication, which is likely to open the door for a potential meeting of higher-level officials from the two countries.
Li said that while there are numerous differences between the two nations, they both have a desire to manage those differences and that it is conceivable for the bilateral relationship to reach a manageable state of “no derail.”
Li said that the focus of the discussions has been on deepening collaboration in sectors that might act as strategic boundaries for the two nations. However, it is unclear if China and the US can increase their cooperation in these areas, Li added.