NAU Study Says America Needs To Cooperate With China More for Climate Change

January 28, 2023

By Corinne Murdock |

A Northern Arizona University (NAU) study declared that America needs to cooperate with China more for climate change. 

The lead author of the study, Hubert Cheung, advocated for greater cooperation with the communist country. In addition to being adjunct faculty in NAU’s School of Earth and Sustainability, Cheung is part of the University of Tokyo in Japan as well as the University of Queensland in Australia. Cheung grew up in Hong Kong, China. 

“We need to cooperate with China if we are to find effective solutions to climate change, for illegal wildlife trade, for sustainability transitions,” stated Cheung. “Understanding the Chinese leadership’s core strategic interests—and where political will already exists in Beijing to deliver on these strategic interests—will help conservation scientists and practitioners find opportunities and manage challenges.”

The paper’s abstract advocated for increasing China’s political power in order to advance sustainability and conservation. The paper went on to issue a defense of the Chinese government’s core interests, such as maintaining its current level of authority over its citizens and expanding its power onto the global stage. 

“‘[A]n environmentally healthy and secure China can benefit the world, and this will only become more apparent over the course of the 21st century,’” stated the paper. “The scale and reach of China’s environmental footprint — and global geopolitical influence — is such that an exploration of its leadership’s political agenda and political will is valuable and timely for conservation.”

The other NAU researcher involved in the study, Duan Biggs, is also part of the same school as Cheung. Biggs indicated that sustainability efforts were the way to brokering a unified front between governments.

“The environment and conservation represent an opportunity for soft-diplomacy and for countries and societies to maintain dialogue and collaboration despite growing tension,” stated Biggs. 

The only researcher hailing from a Chinese university was Tien Ming Lee. He’s a professor at the State Key Laboratory of Biological Control and Schools of Life Sciences and Ecology at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China. 

The other researchers hailed from Japan, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and South Africa. 

The World Economic Forum (WEF), the leading organization attempting to create a new world order of global governance, identifies China as a leader in combating climate change on an international level. The WEF Global Future Council is also attempting to increase trust in China as a world leader.

Last year, China’s President Xi Jinping opened up the WEF’s annual meeting in Switzerland by calling on stronger international cooperation in overcoming COVID-19, revitalizing the economy, and addressing climate change. Jinping encouraged more open relations between all nations, not less.

“We should remove barriers, not erect walls. We should open up, not close off. We should seek integration, not de-couple,” said Jinping. 

The WEF invented the social credit score system — similar to the one used by the Chinese government currently. China keeps a database on its citizens to ensure compliance with government interests.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to

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