John Kerry is right July 31, 2009 : 10:25 AM

This past Sunday, John Kerry wrote a column in the Financial Times that is spot on.

"When Richard Nixon visited China in 1972, the distance travelled seemed greater than the 7,000 miles from Washington to Beijing. He was bridging the gap between two worlds that had been sealed off from one another for an entire generation."

"When China's leaders land in Washington on Monday for the US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, they will arrive as well-known colleagues on a well-travelled route. But while the gulf between the two nations may have narrowed, the challenges before us have only grown."

"Back then, a handshake between Nixon and Chinese premier Zhou Enlai was enough to change the world. Today, the world's biggest greenhouse gas emitter and history's biggest emitter, China and America, must change the world again - and nothing less than a transformation of the energy economy will suffice."

"The question is can we forge a partnership bold enough to prevent a climate catastrophe? With December's make-or-break climate talks in Copenhagen looming, the US-China negotiations are an important test. Because other countries will take their cues from us, a successful global climate deal will depend on America and China signaling our seriousness now."

Our seriousness will be judged by the Senate’s action on the climate bill. This is a moment where America cannot follow, instead we must lead.