I heard the other day in class and on NPR that Chinese climate negotiators in DC have floated a trial balloon of saying that international agreements to reduce carbon emissions should be the responsibility of the consuming countries, not the exporting countries (http://www.washingtonpost.
While this seems like an attempt by
So if tomorrow America took responsibility for the costs of Chinese pollution, presumably it might not make sense to continue importing goods from China because to bring Chinese manufacturing to American (stricter) environmental standards would place a huge "exit tax" on exported goods and price those goods out of the market. Faced with the cost and difficulty of continuing with Chinese production, the higher labor costs in the
Of course, I've made the assumption that ostensibly high Chinese pollution control costs (given the low current technology they use and the cost for the
So this Chinese climate negotiator’s trial balloon could inadvertently mean a revival of American manufacturing, but it would also have negative consequences for Sino-American relations. It would the effect, if not the intent, of protectionism. It would deprive
Just a thought.