U.S. special climate envoy John Kerry said reaching zero net emissions will not be enough to effectively address climate change.
Daily Mail reports:
“Even if we get to net zero, we still need to get carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere,” Kerry said. “This is a bigger challenge than a lot of people have really grabbed on to yet.”
Reducing emissions is going to be hard enough given China, the biggest global emitter of carbon dioxide emissions, is not setting an emissions cap.
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While the U.S. under President Biden is taking action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions immediately, China will not limit coal use until 2026 and the earliest it is expected to reach peak emissions is sometime before 2030.
Importantly, according to the Wall Street Journal, Chinese President Xi Jinping, “stopped short of promising a carbon-emissions cap, as some climate campaigners had hoped.”
China is responsible for about 25 percent of global emissions.
Nonetheless, Kerry touted international cooperation including China.
Kerry describes the urgency of tackling climate change before President Biden’s summit.
The state of play regarding emissions puts the U.S. at a competitive disadvantage to China. The U.S. is set to do a complete overhaul of its energy production while China takes a go-slow approach.
Moreover, there is no guarantee China will keep its verbal commitments.
Americans will see energy prices skyrocket and traditional energy jobs in the oil, natural gas and coal industries will dramatically decline.
Finally, Kerry is already moving the goalposts – zero net emissions is a very aggressive, if not an unachievable, target.
Who knows what Kerry and Biden will propose to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. With Democrats, drastic actions are never enough.