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Chinese President Xi Jinping. Photo: Mary Altaffer/Pool/Getty Images

Chinese President Xi Jinping told the UN General Assembly Tuesday that his country "will not build new coal-fired power projects abroad" and plans to boost support for clean energy in developing nations.

Why it matters: The pledge, if maintained, would mark a breakthrough in efforts to transition global power away from the most carbon-emitting fuel.

  • Nations, including the U.S., have been urging China — historically a key source of coal-plant finance — to make such a commitment.
  • Xi's pledge on coal financing comes just weeks before a critical UN climate summit. However, his remarks did not provide any details on the commitment or its implementation timeline.

Yes, but: China is by far the world's largest coal producer and consumer, and it's still building new coal-fired power generation domestically.

Xi reiterated China's pledge to have its greenhouse gas emissions peak before 2030 and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, but he did not offer strengthened domestic commitments.

Go deeper

Visualizing the climate stakes of Build Back Better's downfall

Expand chart
Data: REPEAT Project; Chart: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

A report from the Princeton-led REPEAT Project examines the scope of Democratic energy legislation in the Build Back Better Act that's on the brink of collapse.

By the numbers: The analysis projects the impact of the more than $300 billion in expanded tax incentives for deploying low-emissions tech, and other climate-related provisions that push the total even higher.

Dec 21, 2021 - World

Chinese sanctions hit Lithuania

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Chinese government is demanding that multinational firms cut ties with Lithuania or else lose access to China's markets, after the Baltic state allowed Taiwan to open an unofficial representative's office there.

Why it matters: Beijing is beginning to implement a de facto sanctions regime to enforce its geopolitical interests around the globe.

Scoop: Trump's new social network quietly courting influencers

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Former President Trump’s elusive new social media network Truth Social — which plans to go public — is reaching out to internet influencers asking them to “reserve their spots” for when it launches in February or March.

Why it matters: The outreach doesn’t mention Trump’s name or affiliation. Some influencers suggest that could be a ploy to enlist their support without realizing the affiliation.

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