China-US climate change cooperation holds optimistic future: John Kerry

"This is not a bilateral issue. It's a multilateral, global, universal, and existential issue," said John Kerry, the US’s climate envoy.

Photo from CFP

Photo from CFP

By WANG Qing


On May 24, as panel discussions related to global warming takes a significant amount of time on the main stage at Davos, Jiemian News asks John Kerry, the US’s climate envoy, to evaluate the progress US and China have made since reaching an agreement at the U.N. climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland. The joint declaration focuses on managing methane emissions, phasing down coal consumption and eliminating global illegal deforestation.

Jiemian News: Last year in Glasgow, you met with Mr. XIE Zhenhua from China, and you made a joint declaration and a few action points. If you would evaluate the progress that you have had since then, how would you evaluate it?

Kerry: I've had several conversations virtually with my counterpart, Xie Zhenhua. And this morning, we met here in Davos, we had a very good meeting, very constructive. We are working to finish the finishing touches on the working group that we've created with experts working from both of our countries who will contribute to the dialogue. We are meeting again in Berlin at the G7 meeting and for a couple of days to bring a working group together.

And obviously, we hope over the next months to be able to accelerate our joint efforts. China signed up in Glasgow to issuing this year, an ambitious national action plan for methane. And that's critical. And we agreed to work together to accelerate the conversion from coal. We also agreed to work on deforestation. Those will be the subjects of the working group that we hope to close out in the next few days.

I'm very optimistic. We will both be on a panel shortly, we would both agree that it's imperative that we work together. This is not a bilateral issue. It's a multilateral, global, universal, and existential issue. And not working together is simply unacceptable for both of our countries, but most importantly for the rest of the world, for all of our citizens.