U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry (L) and Chinese Premier Li Qiang (R) shake hands before a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, on Tuesday. Photo by Florence Lo/EPA-EFE
July 18 (UPI) -- With record-high temperatures in China as a backdrop, U.S. special presidential envoy on climate John Kerry met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang about enhancing their cooperation on the issue of climate change.
In the current heat wave in China, Beijing on Tuesday recorded its record 27th day above 95 degrees. It marked the second intense heatwave for China in consecutive years. In 2022, China recorded its most "extreme high-temperature events" since 1961.
In his meeting with Li, Kerry said the high temperatures were a clear sign that "things are changing."
"In the last weeks, scientists have expressed greater concern than ever about what is happening on the planet," Kerry said.
Kerry framed his opening remarks with Li by explaining the importance of having a stabilized relationship between the world's two largest economies in order to have an impact on global climate change.
"Now we're in a place where because of the efforts of President Biden and President Xi to try to stabilize the relationship, we can now I hope, make progress between now and the meeting in the [United Arab Emirates], in December, of COP 28," Kerry said.
Kerry met with Chinese diplomat Wang Yi, who said climate change is simply one part of a larger picture between the two countries.
"Of course, pushing for cooperation on climate change is under the larger scope of China-U.S. relations," Wang said in a translated statement.
Li said the United States and China should share scientific and technological achievements while promoting global green and low-carbon transformation. He added that developed countries should give more technological support to developing countries.
Kerry said he hopes that the relationship between the two countries can be strengthened so they can jointly address climate change.