THREAD: Biden's new climate plan has a number of good ideas for international engagement on #ClimateAction - a brief summary (1/N):
Let's clear the obvious first, just like Joe does: back to the 2015 #ParisAgreement. This is a no-brainer. (2/N)
This being 'Murica, next he goes after China. This includes both the old school carbon tax adjustment and, more interestingly, China's #BeltAndRoad initiative, which invests massive amounts of money in infrastructure outside China. (3/N)
Here's what Biden has to say: "China is far and away the largest emitter of carbon in the world, and through its massive Belt and Road Initiative, Beijing is also annually financing billions of dollars of dirty fossil fuel energy projects across Asia and beyond." (4/N)
Technically, this is true. But the real reason why China finances #coal is that the recipient countries want to build coal-fired power plants. This idea that China "outsources" its own pollution in some demonic plot... 🤣🤣🤣. (5/N)
Look, our @sais_isep research w/ @thomasnhale on China's investments uncovered instances where the recipients specifically asked China to help build the most polluting coal-fired power plants available. Read the report yourself: (6/N)
Interestingly, though, although Biden's diagnosis is wrong, his medicine is solid. All these are good:
- Condition cooperation on eliminating export subsidies for coal tech
- Seek G20 collaboration on ending coal finance
- Offer alternative finance for low-carbon investment
This last one is particularly impressive. Instead of whining about China as every POTUS does, Biden is actually proposing that USA take *** CONCRETE ACTION *** to offer low-carbon finance. I mean, he is promising to put actual money on the table. (8/N)
So if Biden offers attractive funding to beat coal in countries like Pakistan, that is a job well done. (9/N)
The Biden plan also calls for dismantling fuel subsidies. Is that a great idea? Yes, as we showed in some research back in my @ColumbiaUEnergy days: (10/N)
There is also plenty of emphasis on global cooperation on innovation, which is... obviously good. Right, @vsiv? (11/N).
To conclude: Biden's international plan is solid. Notwithstanding the baseless but politically necessary China-bashing, sign me up. (12/N)
And hey, a reminder: the alternative is worse, even if you don't appreciate everything Biden is proposing. Any plan beats what Trump is currently doing. (N/N)
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