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German chancellor Angela Merkel has said she will confront the US president over climate change, but in negotiations Germany made huge concessions to keep him onside (Photo: Olaf Kosinsky)

German chancellor Angela Merkel has said she will go to the floor with Trump over climate change at next week’s G20 meeting in Hamburg.

But documents exclusively leaked to Climate Home show just how far Germany was prepared to bend in the months before president Donald Trump announced his decision to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement, in order to keep him on board.

Ahead of the summit, the German hosts have been working on a climate action plan, Arthur Neslen reports. But between March and May, they gutted the draft of ambitious language and opened the door for some fossil fuels, possibly even some coal projects, to be treated as “clean” energy.

Since their diplomatic efforts failed, it remains to be seen whether Germany will stick with the watered-down report, produce a stronger version to be agreed by the G19 (without the US) or abandon the initiative altogether.

How green is Modi’s India, really?

It was all smiles and hugs when Narendra Modi met Donald Trump on Monday. Their divergent positions on climate change did not come up.

When talking to other audiences prior to the state visit, their differences were clear. Trump accused India of rent-seeking. Modi promised to go “above and beyond” the Paris climate deal that the US is quitting.

Ever optimistic, the World Resources Institute’s Manish Bapna said their climate silence “signifies discord, not apathy”.

But how deep does Modi’s climate conviction actually run?

In an essential long read, Aditi Roy Ghatak looks past the solar hype to Modi’s close relationship with the coal-pushing Adani family. In its friendliness to business, the Modi administration has slashed environmental protections and cracked down on critics, she writes.