Coordinated Strategies — An Asia Society Special Report

How the U.S. & China Can Work Together to Tackle Air Pollution & Climate Change

US-China Collaboration on Pollution and Climate Change

Coordinated Strategies: How the U.S. and China Can Work Together to Tackle Air Pollution and Climate Change is the third report by Asia Society in a series about U.S.-China Collaboration on clean technology and the issue of climate change. China has the world’s largest population, second largest economy, and is the world’s leading exporter. Consequently, China, like the United States, is one of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases. Poor air quality is a public health issue across both nations. Not only do these shared conditions create a large market for the development of clean technologies, but they also encourage U.S.-China collaboration. The natural synergy between the U.S. and China and the shared responsibility to lead sustainable innovation will push this partnership further toward realization.

As the effects of pollution continue to negatively impact people and the environment, this report seeks to build upon previous undertakings by the Asia Society to promote an increase in U.S.-China cooperation in dealing with this matter. This report aims to locate areas in which the two countries can collaborate, specifically looking at the automobile market and the building heating market. U.S.-China collaboration could solve issues of high relative heating and vehicle costs, inadequate charging infrastructure and electric grids, and overly rigid tariff designs, improving the overall accessibility to clean technologies. In both China and the U.S., considerable efforts are being made to reduce environmental pollution and counter climate change. In China, the majority of research, development, and promotion of clean technologies that address air quality is headed by the central government, whereas in the U.S., many of these responsibilities have recently fallen to the states, of which California has been the most outspoken. Efforts to revamp the current energy system include finding new, cleaner ways to obtain, store and use energy.

This report hopes to elucidate clear opportunities for US-China collaboration in clean energy and the environment, with a focus on zero-emissions vehicles and building heating markets. Our aim is to outline joint strategies between the two countries meant to tackle air pollution and climate change at a systemic level.


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