Biden’s Green Envoy John Kerry Praises China’s Climate Progress Despite Beijing’s Coal Boom  

Daily Caller

President Joe Biden’s Climate Envoy John Kerry praised China for going beyond its commitments to combat climate change in an interview with the Financial Times released on Tuesday despite the country’s ramping up of coal usage to achieve energy security. China has “outperformed its commitments” to curb carbon emissions and embrace renewable energy, Kerry told the FT. At the same time, Beijing is currently constructing new emissions-heavy coal power plants and has indicated that it will increase its coal consumption for several years as it works to fuel its economy and avoid blackouts, according to a July Greenpeace report. “They had said they will do X, Y and Z and they have done more,” Biden’s climate envoy told the FT. Although Chinese President Xi Jinping announced plans to roll back China’s coal consumption in April 2021, Chinese provincial governments approved plans to add a total of 8.63 gigawatts (GW) of new coal power plants in the first quarter of 2022 alone, equal to 46.55% of the total capacity approved in 2021, according to the report. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang also called for boosting coal supplies in April to ensure energy security amid the rise of global energy shortages, stating that coal production should be increased by 300 million tonnes in 2o22, up 7% from 2021’s output of 4.1 billion tonnes, according to the South China Morning Post.

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