China is playing Kerry for a chump on climate

You can tell that China doesn't believe in the "climate change" doomsday scenarios because it continues to build new coal-fired electricity generators and already generates more CO2 than any other entity on the planet, 27% of the total.  If it believed the mathematical models, it would change its behavior, because China is not exempt from the catastrophic harm that enthusiasts like John Kerry proclaim awaits us all.

Instead, China is playing Kerry for a chump as he meets with Chinese officials to try to obtain changes in their behavior.  Instead of being worried about saving their own skins, the Chinese want to trade cooperation on climate for substantive concessions from the USA on other matters.  The Wall Street Journal editorial board writes:

It's become popular for progressives to proclaim that climate change is the top threat to America's national security. China's Communist Party, by far the world's top emitter of greenhouse gases, has taken note. This American delusion turns climate change into a major source of strategic leverage for Beijing.

Foreign Minister Wang Yi made this leverage explicit in a Wednesday lecture to U.S. climate envoy John Kerry, who is back in China pleading with its leaders to reduce the country's carbon consumption. "The U.S. side wants the climate change cooperation to be an 'oasis' of China-U.S. relations," Mr. Yi said, according to a Foreign Ministry readout of the meeting. But he insisted that "China-U.S. cooperation on climate change cannot be divorced from the overall situation of China-U.S. relations."

In other words, Beijing wants to extract concessions from Washington before it further indulges Mr. Kerry's climate show. Mr. Yi told Mr. Kerry, according to the document, that "the United States has made a major strategic miscalculation about China." America should "attach importance to and actively respond to the 'two lists' and 'three bottom lines' put forward by China," he instructed.

China's priorities always put the interests of the Chinese Communist Party above all else.  After that, China's self-interest.  Serving all humanist in common by making economic sacrifices in the name of decades-hence temperatures does not even make the list.

For the Communist Party, climate change is secondary to China's immediate strategic interests. Yet it hopes the U.S. is woolly-headed enough to trade away its security priorities for unenforceable climate promises.

For his part, Kerry is content to play the buffoon, as the New York Times reports:

"My response to them was, 'Hey look, climate is not ideological. It's not partisan, it's not a geostrategic weapon or tool, and it's certainly not day-to-day politics. It's a global, not bilateral, challenge,'" he said on a call with reporters.

And, Mr. Kerry said, when it comes to tackling climate change, "We think China can do more."

China is content to keep building coal-fired power stations, as Richard Fernandez reports:

In fact, China insisted that it needed more coal-fired power plants for economic and energy security reasons.

At a press briefing on Tuesday (April 27), the director-general of the environment ministry's climate change department, Mr Li Gao, said that new coal-fired power plants provided a source of employment and helped stabilise the grid with a predictable source of energy.

"They mainly help guarantee people's livelihoods, and guarantee the flexibility and security of our energy grid," he said, adding that such plants may not run at "full capacity"

China will gladly accept concessions from the USA for making pointless symbolic efforts to reduce CO2.  But you can tell that it just doesn't believe that the goal Kerry touts is important.  He is playing the fool, a role for which his training is excellent.

Caricature by Donkey HoteyCC BY-SA 2.0 license.

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