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Riyadh moves for regional green leadership

Elements of Saudi Arabia’s domestic strategy and sudden assertion of leadership stretch credibility, but its plans are indicative of a reluctant embrace of global trends

Between offering a ceasefire in Yemen and shifting oil production in favour of American motorists, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman found time for another headline-grabbing effort to rehabilitate his tattered reputation—especially in the eyes of environmentalist US president Joe Biden. The embattled heir and de facto ruler took to the television screens in late March to launch the Saudi Green Initiative. It is a hugely ambitious ten-year programme to radically reduce carbon emissions and land degradation. For good measure, he also unilaterally unveiled a Middle East Green Initiative, extending similar goals across the region. Faced with mounting international decar

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