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Appears in Collections:History and Politics Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: A Greening Dragon in the Desert? China’s Role in the Geopolitical Ecology of Decarbonisation in the Eastern Mediterranean
Author(s): Hoffmann, Clemens
Ergenc, Ceren
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Issue Date: 2023
Date Deposited: 31-Oct-2022
Citation: Hoffmann C & Ergenc C (2023) A Greening Dragon in the Desert? China’s Role in the Geopolitical Ecology of Decarbonisation in the Eastern Mediterranean. <i>Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies</i>, 25 (2), pp. 82-101.
Abstract: The new geopolitics of energy in the Eastern Mediterranean is not determined by hydrocarbons anymore. A significant expansion of renewables is underway. Driven by a surge in ‘Green Finance’ and decarbonization policies, this development changes conventional relationships of dependency. This takes place in an environment, where Asian and Western energy security strategies rapidly evolve in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. North Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean play a central role in this repositioning. China, far from merely being a dinosaur, is the largest producer of renewable energy. It also invests in infrastructure abroad, including Egypt. The largest Arab nation not only seeks to become a global energy hub, but also a decarbonization champion, as reflected in the hosting of COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh. This article will look at these developments, including its internal and external contradictions to understand the motivation behind China’s commitment to Egyptian solar expansion. It will demonstrate that, while part of a global political economy of decarbonization, China’s main motivation for investing in renewables in the Eastern Mediterranean remains geostrategic, tied to its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). This, in turn, informs how we think of the Geo-Political Ecology of Decarbonization in the region.
DOI Link: 10.1080/19448953.2022.2131079
Rights: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
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