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Changing Dynamics at Global Climate Policy Front

The pulling out of US from Paris Climate Agreement by President Trump is changing the nature of climate diplomacy at the global front.

Prior to Trump s election, US was the major contributor for climate related investments in many developing and under developed countries. It contributed immensely for UNFCCC, IPCC and many other international bodies.

The country also pledged to give $3 billion to the Green Climate Fund (GCF), set up to fund green initiatives in the poorer nations and has a target of mobilizing $100 billion from advanced countries by 2020. All these are facing Trump administration s budget cuts.

To counter these challenges and to uphold Paris agreement a new leadership is to be emerged. Rightly so, European Union (EU) and China came forward with an alliance to fight climate change. The new alliance will provide an alternative leadership in the wake of US abdicating its leadership role.

To prove its credentials, China has already made announcement of its commitment to Paris accord and stepped up investments in renewable energy. It also suspended construction of over 100 coal based power plants.

But, questions remain over China s capacity to sustains investments in renewable energy. As per People s Bank of China, it will need $600 billion a year to become a “Green economy”. Though China is moving ahead with fiscal measures and use of green bonds on this front, some questions remain.

Can it lead the world climate negotiations? Is the world ready to accept China s climate leadership? Will china become a new hegemony with its new-found power? Is it willing to fund new innovations and technologies tackling climate change?

The new alliance may have answers to these questions. EU on its part has always played a proactive role in tackling climate change. It had supported many developing and poorer countries in mitigating the climate problem.

Now, the new alliance must step up their political, technological, economic and scientific cooperation on climate change and clean energy significantly.

There are new possibilities emerging too due to US s withdrawal. Countries like India and China can transform their coal sector, deploy electric vehicles, build sustainable urban infrastructure and collaborate on R&D etc.

In the future, whoever assume the climate leadership should work hard to uphold the Paris Agreement.

Trumps withdrawal is a temporary glitch in the fight against climate change but the world is ready to take the mantle from US and move ahead.

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