China’s 2060 climate pledge: long-awaited breakthrough or sugar-coating another decade of rising emissions?

In a surprise announcement at the UN General Assembly, chairman Xi declared that China will aim to peak CO2 emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060 – the earlier pledge was for emissions to peak “around” 2030 with no word of what would happen after. While any increase in ambition is a positive signal, the upcoming five-year plan will be a key test of what the new pledge means in practice.