China’s top climate change official rejected as protectionist on Wednesday a U.S. idea to put tariffs on some imports from countries that do not place a price on carbon, chiding the United States to do more to cut its greenhouse gas emissions.
U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu on Tuesday told a congressional panel that once Washington develops a system limiting carbon emissions, if other countries do not impose a cost on carbon emissions the United States will be at a disadvantage.
Chu told the House of Representatives Science and Technology Committee that the tax idea was just one proposal the Obama administration should evaluate. He voiced hope that fast-growing developing countries such as China and India would take steps to reduce their emissions.
But Xie Zhenhua, head of China’s Climate Change and Coordinating Committee said, “Climate change and charging carbon taxes in imports … are two issues in two areas” and should be tackled in separate negotiating forums.