21 Pages

Networks of states to spur hope and change

It was never a good idea to sacrifice the importance of climate action on the pyre of the US–China rivalry. The United States (US) continues to vacillate between climate action and climate skepticism, and US–China relations, even at their best, have been plagued by underlying suspicion and possibilities of geopolitical tension. Given the importance of states as actors not only within their own boundaries, but even more so as the principal actors in international affairs, it follows that leadership in the Anthropocene will originate from them. States will need to make efforts at domestic transformation in response to the new epoch and contribute to global institutional redesign and transformation that will be necessary moving forward. An EU–China partnership offers the best chance to streamline efforts and achieve concrete results first in global emission reductions but simultaneously across a wide range of other issues that require sustainable policies for future development.