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This paper, co-authored by Joanna Lewis, convenor of the U.S.-China Research Group on Climate Change, was published in Science and counters common assumptions that collaboration with China presents substantial national security and economic risks across the board.

September 15, 2022

Risks of Decoupling from China on Low-Carbon Technologies

Author: Joanna Lewis

China plays, and will likely continue to play, an indispensable role in research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) and manufacturing of low-carbon technologies that are necessary to address climate change. However, the growing size of these economic sectors, coupled with national security concerns over the strong dependence on China in certain critical industries, has prompted policy-makers from Washington to Brussels to ask whether to alter course. Recognizing that economic and national security risks differ across technologies and the nature of a country’s integration with China, the co-authors highlight five primary risks to integration—separated into their economic and national security implications—and apply them to five leading low-carbon technologies: solar, wind, batteries, “green” steel, and carbon capture and sequestration (CCS).