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In September 2020, President Xi Jinping declared that China would achieve carbon neutrality by 2060. This climate pledge is widely considered the most ambitious of all made to date, especially since the world’s largest carbon-emitting nation is still at a developing stage and has not yet achieved its emissions peak. With the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) on the horizon, the world is eager to learn about any potential new pledges from the Chinese leadership. This talk will provide an overview of climate governance under President Xi Jinping and draw on the presenter’s work on local implementation of air pollution policies in China to discuss potential lessons for its ongoing efforts to curb carbon emissions.
Shiran Victoria Shen’s research primarily examines the organizational causes of and responses to environmental crises, with particular understanding of how local politics shape air pollution and climate management in China. Professor Shen graduated Phi Beta Kappa and with high honors from Swarthmore College and holds an M.S. in civil and environmental engineering and a Ph.D. in political science, both from Stanford University.