A state-owned Chinese newspaper ripped Biden administration climate envoy John Kerry this week after he met with a Chinese government official about climate change and emissions.
Kerry said there is “no way” for a global approach to climate change without the “full engagement and commitment” of China, which is the world’s largest polluter.
The State Department praised the meeting between Kerry and the Chinese government.
“Secretary Kerry emphasized the importance of the world taking serious climate actions in this critical decade and strengthening global climate ambition,” the department said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Chinese state media reported the country “hopes the American side will create the appropriate circumstances for jointly tackling climate change based on the spirit of the conversations between their leaders,” according to the AP.
Not everyone was prepared to tout the meeting as productive.
In an Op-Ed published by the Chinese state-owned Global Times after the meeting, the newspaper summed up Kerry’s meeting with the Chinese government as “quite absurd.”
“US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry is on his second visit to China this year, hoping to promote China-US cooperation on the climate issue,” reads a Global Times article with no author listed in the byline.
Do you think the Chinese government would have made a deal with Trump?
“As the climate issue is a common concern of all mankind, Beijing and Washington jointly promoting the full implementation of the Paris Agreement benefits not only the two countries, but also the entire world.”
“However, US expectations — separating the cooperation on climate issue from the entire China-US ties, giving such joint work a special hype in disregard of the overwhelming complexity of other aspects of the bilateral relationship, making the Joe Biden administration look righteous and reasonable through the lens of climate cooperation, helping the administration win more points politically — seem quite absurd,” the Global Times piece added.
The outlet concluded that current American policy toward China is “wicked.”
The article is yet another indication that the Chinese do not take the Biden administration seriously.
Kerry’s trip elicited a fair amount of criticism, especially given the current problems facing the U.S. at home and in Afghanistan.
— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) September 4, 2021
John Kerry has been quiet lately.
As a former Secretary of State, you think he’d have something to say about all that has gone on in Afghanistan.
Once again, what is it that Kerry does in his fake position?
The Senate NEVER confirmed him and no one knows his scope of work!
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) September 3, 2021
Kerry sided with China on the issue of human rights abuses in comments after two days in the country this week.
“On the one hand, we’re saying to them, ‘You have to do more to help deal with the climate.’ And on the other hand, their solar panels are being sanctioned, which makes it harder for them to sell them,” he said, the South China Morning Post reported.
Ultimately, Kerry’s meeting was unproductive, and no deal he sought to strike up with the Chinese was determined.