Professor of Economics from the University of Southern California, who also holds a degree in Letters, Arts and Sciences from Dornsife College, says that for China, climate change is no hoax, but a business and political opportunity.
In mid-November, while Americans were preoccupied with election returns, China sent some of its clearest signals yet that it will continue to pursue an international leadership role on issues including climate. At an international climate change summit in Marrakech, the Chinese government reasserted its commitment to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.
The government announced that its aggregate emissions will peak by 2030 or earlier, and that its emissions per dollar of economic output will decline sharply.
For 25 years I have taught my economics students that climate change represents the ultimate “free rider problem.” To slow global climate change, we need to reduce aggregate global emissions. Yet each individual nation’s efforts are too small to “solve” the problem, so it has only weak incentives to take costly mitigation actions, and strong incentives to “free ride” on the benefits of emission reductions by other countries.
From this perspective, President-elect Trump’s pledges to “cancel” the Paris Agreement and dismantle President Obama’s carbon mitigation initiatives follow standard economic logic. If the United States backs out of commitments to reduce national emissions, it still benefits from other countries’ efforts.
Why, then, is China pressing ahead with low-carbon initiatives? My research suggests several motives. Chinese leaders want to improve the quality of life in their nation’s cities by reducing air pollution; win large shares of promising export markets for green technologies; and increase China’s “soft power” in international relations. Taking aggressive action to cut carbon emissions helps China in all three areas.
Disclaimer: Matthew Kahn does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond the academic appointment above.
more recommended stories
Helicopter carrying top Mexican officials flips, kills 13 on ground
According to the Chicago Tribune, a.
Mexican Space Agency participates in outer space initiatives development
According to El Universal, this year,.
Major American automakers ask Trump to stick with NAFTA
Most automakers have production and supply.
Priest accused of sexually abusing a 12-year-old child in Mexico City
A 58-year-old priest was arrested and.
Progreso Carnival: chaotic for most visitors and residents
“In addition to suffering a number.
Exemplary Yucatecan police officer accidentally drowns in a well
MÉRIDA, Yucatán.- Pedro Celestino Martín Sansores,.
Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rocks Mexico City… again
A powerful magnitude-7.2 earthquake shook south.
San Diego and Tijuana keep building stronger commercial ties with new air cargo facility
A new air cargo park set.
Did you know that you can get health and life insurance for your dog in Mexico?
At present, there are several dog.
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox will present his new book in Dallas, Texas
According to the Dallas Morning News,.