China’s Unreliability in Climate Fight


Would those who kill human beings hesitate to kill plants and animals?…writes Kok Bayraq

At the UN’s  COP28, the annual international climate summit held in  Dubai in the first week of December, the Chinese side opposed the EU’s carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM), stating that “China would set its climate targets based on the country’s own pace of technological and economic development.”

Sun Zhen, Deputy Director General of the Climate Change Department of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, clearly reminded all that China is a developing country. Yes, Sun revealed a truth, albeit in a covert way, on the international stage.

If we lift the curtain, the truth is this. The Chinese people, some of whose citizens have fled the border and sought political asylum in the USA and Europe due to economic and political problems, do not have the time or mind to worry about climate.

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP), as an unelected power that seeks to legitimize its rule by all means, both bloody and bloodless, has neither the mind nor the inclination to think about climate.

Even so, Kurt Vandenberghe, Director-General of the European Commission for Climate Action, continued to plead with the CCP. “We remain hopeful that China can impact the world and global communities by peaking carbon before 2030,” he said. What a naïve and unrealistically expectation!

Is it possible for a family whose house is a mess and whose kitchen is covered in dirt to have a clean garden? Is it possible for someone whose garden is full of wild plants to have manicured flowers in front of their doors?

When its own regime was shaken in 1989, the (CCP) preserved its throne by killing its own citizens using tanks. The regime kept the COVID-19 virus secret for two months in 2019–2020 to protect its own image. This caused the death of seven million human beings in the world and three million in the USA so far.  As twenty-two countries, government, or parliaments defined and proclaimed, China is currently committing genocide against the Uyghurs.

Is it possible for a ruling group that has no compassion for people to have compassion for animals? Can a group that uses all its means to destroy a nation, a culture, and a religion have any concern about the disappearance of flowers and trees? Can a regime that does not take responsibility for a disaster like COVID-19 and does not allow the origins of the pandemic to be investigated care about the depletion of rivers and the drying of lakes? Is it possible for such a regime to be disturbed by air and sea pollution?

The CCP continues to insult the intellectual capacity of UN officials by making an empty promise. “China had built solid data, monitoring and verification measures, as well as a legislative framework that ensured high-level integrity of the country’s voluntary and compliance carbon markets,” Sun said.

Then he confirmed once again that China cannot cooperate. “I am sorry to say that if the EU wants to lead the world using policies like CBAM, that’s simply not straight,” he said.

Previously, China had committed to peak its carbon emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060 under its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC).

The first reason for China’s empty promises is to divert attention during negotiations with the USA and Europe, and to prevent urgent issues such as the Uyghur Genocide and its responsibility for COVID-19 from being brought to the agenda. The second goal is to make a profit by turning American and European green energy projects into businesses China can benefit from.

The US, the UK and Australia are planning to launch CBAM-style policies. CBAM is a landmark tool to put a fair price on the carbon released during the production of carbon-intensive goods entering the EU and to promote cleaner industrial production in non-EU countries. CBAM will ensure that the carbon price of imports into the EU is equivalent to the carbon price of domestic production and that the EU’s climate targets are met. CBAM is also designed to comply with WTO rules.

In fact, CBAM may have emerged earlier and more effectively than China expected. China, realizing that the empty promises and fake data doesn’t work at this stage, is being forced to show its true face.

A staff member showcases Chinese calligraphy at China’s pavilion during COP28 in Dubai, UAE, on Dec. 6, 2023. (Xinhua/Wang Dongzhen)

Let’s be realistic. Concerns about the effects of climate change are primarily the problem of peoples who have overcome the problem of hunger. This is not the problem of a poor society whose stomachs are not yet full and whose social justice is not yet established. If a state is worried about division, if a regime is worried about collapse, if a society is struggling with the problem of stability, it is foolishness to expect cooperation from it on the climate issue.

Yes, China is telling the truth now. It is not worried about the climate, it is worried about the “terrorist Uyghurs,” it has problems with “separatist Taiwan,” it has a headache with “anarchist Hong Kong,” it has a permanent concern about protecting the regime, but there is no such thing as climate in its mind or heart… Those who do not understand this does not understand anything about China.

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