Chinese experts urge fair climate change regime

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, September 24, 2014
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The world badly needs a fair and effective regime to tackle the grave challenges of climate change, Chinese researchers said on Tuesday as world leaders attend the UN Climate Summit in New York.

Chen Ying, a research fellow at the Institute for Urban and Environmental Studies under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the meeting, at which Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli is present, will help muster political will for talks at the upcoming Lima Climate Change Conference.

Countries are expected to discuss details of a new global climate change pact at the Lima conference in December, one year ahead of another crucial conference in Paris aimed at finalizing and passing the new global pact.

"We hope the countries can reach an agreement in 2015 and will not repeat the failure of the Copenhagen summit," said Chen, referring to perceived discrimination against China at this event in 2009.

"Otherwise, global action on climate change could be affected and even stalled," Chen said.

"Facing the severe challenges of climate change, [the world] badly needs a fair and effective global climate regime," she said. "Without fairness, no regime would be able to get wide international support and would not be effectively implemented."

With rising global status and eyeing greener growth, China, the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases, may shoulder more responsibility to more actively tackle climate change.

But with the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities" still being effective, China, as a developing country, can not pledge the same amount of emission cuts as developed countries as they are at different development stages, according to Chen.

The principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities" is the cornerstone of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change formed in 1992 and has been ratified by 196 parties.

It requires developed countries to cut more emissions and also offer financial and technological support to the developing countries.

China, however, has expressed sincerity to the global community by making great efforts to reduce energy use and carbon emissions over the past few years, Chen said.

The Chinese government has pledged a 40-percent to 45-percent reduction in carbon dioxide intensity by 2020 from the levels in 2005.

China saw carbon dioxide emissions per unit of gross domestic product drop 28.56 percent by 2013 from the levels of 2005, or a reduction of 2.5 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.

Gao Yun, deputy director of the technology and climate change department under the China Meteorological Administration, said she hoped world leaders at the UN summit could reach consensus on key controversial issues related to funding, technology transfer and reduction quotas.

Wang Yao, head of the research center on climate and energy finance under the Central University of Finance and Economics, said the world needs a unified evaluation system to see if a country meets reduction targets.

Meanwhile, there should be a punishment mechanism for countries that fail to meet the reduction targets, Wang said.

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