China's carbon pledge a great contribution to the world

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At a recent conference in Beijing, leading experts from multiple fields met to discuss China's path to achieving its ambitious carbon goals - a move that will benefit the entire world.

The Xiangshan Science Conference, aiming at exploring an innovative sci-tech path to achieving carbon peak and carbon neutrality, was recently held by the Ministry of Science and Technology in Beijing. Nearly 100 academicians and high-level experts in the fields of domestic energy, industry, transportation and construction attended the meeting to share their views in this regard.

Du Xiangwan, former vice president of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, said that China's energy structure faced a serious over-emphasis on coal, which is difficult to alter. However, greater energy efficiency can also benefit China in its low-carbon transition. China is expected to reduce its energy intensity by 40% before 2050 by relying on technological progress and energy structure transition.

China plans to reach peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and become carbon neutral by 2060. This is not only a requirement for China itself, but also a commitment to the world.

During a media briefing held on April 22, Ma Zhaoxu, vice minister of Foreign Affairs, said that China has never shies away from addressing global climate change. China's announcement of targets for carbon peak and carbon neutrality is a major strategic decision based on the domestic requirements of promoting sustainable development and the huge responsibility of building a community with a shared future for mankind. It reflects the "highest possible ambition" in the Paris Agreement and also embodies China's steadfast determination to deal with climate change. 

Ma said that according to analysis by relevant institutions, China's carbon neutrality promises will reduce the global temperature by 0.2 to 0.3 degrees Celsius. China will achieve the transition from carbon peak to carbon neutrality in just 30 years, meaning the country must complete the world's biggest reduction in carbon emission intensity in the shortest time in human history. To achieve it, China needs an extensive and profound transformation in its economy and society.

"After achieving carbon peak in 1990, Europe needs 60 years to become carbon neutral in 2050. But China have only 30 years. Achieving such a tremendous amount of work in only 30 years is unprecedented in human history," said Zhu Min, former deputy managing director of the International Monetary Fund.

Erik Berglof, chief economist of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, also agreed that China's promise of realizing net zero GHG emissions in 2060 will be the largest contribution to the world's efforts of dealing with climate change. 

Content created in partnership with Science and Technology Daily.

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