China shows responsible image in Cancun

By Liu Lili, Ren Haijun, Wang Yujue
0 CommentsPrint E-mail Xinhua, December 8, 2010
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China attracted special attention at the ongoing United Nations Climate Change Conference here, and has shown the image of a responsible country.


China is trying to play an active and constructive role to push for substantial progress at the conference during which mitigation is set to be at the center of discussion.

China has proposed that the signatories to the Kyoto Protocol in the first term should make promises in the second term, the United States make a comparable promise under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and developing countries taking emission reduction pledges in accordance with their respective national conditions.

"Compromise" is one of the key words in Cancun. In order to reach a balanced result, the Chinese delegation has been busy negotiating in bilateral and multilateral talks.

Xie Zhenhua, head of the Chinese delegation in the talks and deputy director of China's National Development and Reform Commission, started to meet with delegates from other BASIC nations (Brazil, South Africa and India), the United States and the European Union (EU) upon his arrival in Mexico last week.

According to Xie, it is possible for different parties to reach consensus on financial support, technology transfer, forestry protection and capacity building of developing countries.


The Japanese delegation has announced to oppose the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, and countries like Canada and Russia have echoed Japan's stance, casting a shadow on the well-intended negotiations.

Some experts said that their real purpose was to shake off the responsibilities, which stirred up dissatisfaction from the developing world.

Su Wei, chief negotiator of the Chinese delegation, said that China could cooperate with other parties and compromise on some non-principle issues. But it will not bend over some nonnegotiable ones such as the continuation of the Kyoto Protocol.

The determination of the Chinese delegation has won applause from developing countries. Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas said that it would not accept any country's decision of abandoning the Kyoto Protocol.


Delegates from some countries called China's efforts in energy conservation and emission reduction a good example for others.

At the end of this year, China is expected to achieve its goal set in its 11th Five-Year plan (2005-2010) of reducing energy consumption per unit of gross domestic product (GDP) by 20 percent.

The country's energy consumption per unit of GDP has been reduced by 53 percent from 1990 to 2009, much more than the average level of 15 to 30 percent by the developed countries.

Given that China is still at the stage of industrialization, urbanization, its energy consumption is likely to continue rising in the near future. But its efforts to improve its energy mix, develop clean energy and renewable energy were already hailed internationally.

In 2006, China promulgated the renewable energy law and for the first time set targets to double the proportion of renewable energy in total energy consumption mix from about 7 percent to 15 percent by 2020.

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