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Asia Unbound

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Showing posts for "Climate Change"

Copenhagen Lessons Still Lost on China and the United States

by Elizabeth C. Economy

Courtesy of Reuters/Larry Downing

Last week I traveled down to Mexico City as part of a delegation led by my colleagues Michael Levi and Shannon O’Neil to discuss climate change issues with Mexican officials and civil society leaders. Aside from discovering that Mexico City is beautiful, I found that the Mexicans are “all systems go” as they prepare for the next round of climate negotiations to be held in Cancun in December. They are determined to ensure that the Cancun round avoids not only the logistical nightmares but also the political pitfalls of the Copenhagen meeting. For that to happen, they need a modicum of cooperation and constructive participation by both the United States and China. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem that either country is getting the point.

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The U.S. and China Have at it Again; but it’s much ado about nothing

by Elizabeth C. Economy

Everyone is in a tizzy over the supposed downturn in U.S.-China relations. (See here, here, and here.) The rhetoric is heating up on both sides, and new issues of contention appear to pop up daily. Our disputes over Copenhagen, Google, Taiwan arms sales, the Dalai Lama and Iran are all front page headlines. Are we indeed headed for an open rift in the relationship that could imperil future cooperation on a range of important, pressing global matters? Read more »

Copenhagen: The Real China Take-Away

by Elizabeth C. Economy

Without an eye-catching climate accord out of Copenhagen, what really grabbed the media spotlight were the behind-the-scenes negotiations and back-door politicking. And at the center of it all was China.

Two very different narratives emerged concerning China’s participation in the climate negotiations: savior versus spoiler. In the savior version–promulgated not surprisingly primarily by the Chinese media–Premier Wen through his leadership and perseverance not only brought hope to dispirited international negotiators but also played the central role in forging consensus at several critical junctures in the negotiations. In the spoiler version–put forward by some delegates from the G-77 and the developed countries–China refused critical compromises on issues such as global 2050 targets and measurement, reporting, and verification, making a meaningful deal impossible. Read more »

The Decade’s Top Ten Game-Changers in U.S.-China Relations

by Elizabeth C. Economy and Adam Segal

It’s the end of the year, and end of a decade, and we here at Asia Unbound are not immune to the easy lure of the “Top Ten” list. OK, it’s not the Top Ten “Accidental Celebrities” or “Cultural Moments” Newsweek has on offer, but below are the ten most important game-changers in U.S.-China relations from the last decade. Read more »