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China doubling down on Coal is as much about military strategy —their “Malacca Dilemma”— as it is about cheap industrialization & electricity.
"Energy insecurity" is a euphemism for China's fears: 1) US Navy could blockade Oil & Gas tankers in straits of Malacca 2) US $ sanctions could choke ability to pay for Oil & Gas. Its "Look West" coal boom (ie hedging) is our era's MAD. #GeopoliticsOfGHGs
Asian Coal Question hangs as centrally around the 21stC as the 'German Question' did in the 20thC. Can live with a China that is authoritarian & powerful but not one that burns coal. Current strategy of containment, pushes China towards coal-powered autarchy. #GeopoliticsofGHGs
Alternative justifications that China's leaders have stated about the post 2000s "Develop the West" policy are a) unbalanced growth on eastern seaboard b) nation building. But hard to disconfirm hypothesis of strategic overland coal.
And who can blame them for assessing threats rationally? US military strategies in Asia —Distant blockade’, ‘maritime denial’— center around naval chokepoints to deny China access to gulf energy & western markets.
Succinct appraisal here ht @policytensor policytensor.com/2015/04/09/war…
Everything you may have heard about Obama's Pivot to Asia or Chinese military buildup along south china seas or Andaman/Philipine/Australian archipelagos bristling with military kit flows from those US war strategies. Oh, and submarines. Never forget subs.
That the worlds 2 great powers are also its top fossil producers (US -O&G; China -Coal) worries everyone. It makes Geopolitics & GHGs inseparable. We are in a MAD, a Mexican Standoff, a pick-your-individually-rational-collectively-disastrous metaphor.
Fortunately, we have a video of Oct 2019 meeting of China's Natl Energy Commission chaired by Premier Li Keqiang.
Dr. Strangelove (1964) - "It is necessary now to make a choice between 2 admittedly regrettable, but distinguishable postwar environments..."
Pan to @adam_tooze 's unforgettable scene: "Imagine instead the president & his buggy careening around the five-acre flight deck of a $13Bn... nuclear-powered aircraft carrier engaged in ‘dynamic force deployment’ to the South China Sea" #GeopoliticsOfGHGs lrb.co.uk/v41/n07/adam-t…
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