Wednesday, November 03, 2021

China's claim to be at a "special development stage" the height of hypocrisy

America may be "back" as regards climate change and their pledges at the COP26 climate conference, but, unfortunately, China is still China.

President Xi Jinping did not feel the need to attend the conference, sending instead his climate change lieutenant Xie Zhenhua to soak up the bad vibes that China was always going to receive at this conference.

When faced with criticism of China's continued reliance on carbon-spewing coal technology, Mr. Xie responded by saying that China is at a "special development stage", and so cannot be expected to rein in its coal-fired power stations any quicker than it currently is (i.e. it's not - China is continuing to build new coal power stations by the dozen). Xie insists that China is making its "biggest possible effort to address climate change", and just deflected the blame for the world's ills onto the USA, which is standard Chinese policy.

For China to play the aggrieved pauper - basically, it is saying that China is still a developing country and, as such, should not be expected to rectify a problem that was created by rich, developed countries - is the height of hypocrisy. China is the world's second largest economy, and the world's biggest emitter of CO2. To call itself a developing country whenever it suits the situation, based on its per capita wealth, is disingenuous in the extreme, and a slap in the face for real developing countries (including countries like Gabon, which is punching well above its weight on international change).

Buy, hey, that's just China being China, the country that every other country loves to hate but can't afford to antagonize.

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