Back of the queue? UK’s net-zero U-turn, according to a Biden ally, may ruin trade deal chances. 

John Kerry, the US climate envoy chosen by President Joe Biden last year, has indicated that the UK’s future prime minister must uphold the country’s present net-zero commitments if there is any chance of a transatlantic trade agreement. 

The two contenders trying to succeed Boris Johnson, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak, both support the net-zero goal.

The Tory candidates, however, raised concerns about several of the government’s climate measures in the early rounds of the election. 

While Mr Sunak promised to maintain the moratorium on the construction of new onshore wind farms, the Foreign Secretary has stated that she will halt green charges on domestic energy bills.

Mr Sunak also wants to establish a legal target to make Britain energy independent by 2045 by supervising a significant increase in offshore turbines. 

Kerry, who was himself defeated by George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election, said he did not wish to get involved in the leadership race in an interview with BBC Radio 4’s The World This Weekend programme. 

Additionally, he did not say outright that any change in the UK’s position on the matter would be a deal-breaker.

However, he added in a way that made obvious the displeasure with which the Biden administration would view any divergence: “I will say very pointedly and adamantly – we are behind.

“We do not have the luxury of jiggering with the 2050 right now.

“We are currently headed to a warming of the planet at somewhere between 2.5 degrees and 3.5 degrees centigrade.”

He warned: “The world is already warmed to 1.1, close to 1.2 degrees now. The cushion we have between 1.5 and that is obviously tiny.

“And we see what’s happening with the damages on the planet at 1.1 degrees.

“Imagine when you get to 1.5 – every tenth of a degree that we warm is going to cost us trillions more dollars.” Source

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