China Poised for Leadership on Climate Change After U.S. Reversal

As the United States dismantles climate policy, China looks to surge ahead as a global leader on climate action, National Geographic reports.

As U.S. President Donald Trump prepares to sign a new executive order dismantling a series of Obama-era climate policies, China stands poised to fill the leadership vacuum, Christina Nunez reports for National Geographic.

The order, which is expected to begin the process of rescinding the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan and roll back regulations across fossil fuel industries, leaves China — the world’s second-largest emitter, after the U.S. — free to step up to become the global leader on climate action. As the U.S. moves to remove obstacles to coal leasing federal lands and to increase coal jobs, China has taken steps to move away from coal, with renewed commitments to reducing emissions and meeting its targets in the historic Paris Agreement on climate change.

“The Paris Agreement is a hard-won achievement,” Chinese President Xi Jinping told the World Economic Forum in Switzerland in January. “All signatories should stick to it instead of walking away from it, as this is a responsibility we must assume for future generations.”

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