VII. Participation of the Whole Society
Since 2012, public education campaigns have been carried out all over China. The function of the media has been given full play which has increased public awareness of climate change and low-carbon development.
(I) Enhancing Government Guidance
The Chinese government is taking the lead in practicing a “low-carbon life.” In December, 2012, a meeting of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee presided over by Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the Committee, adopted an eight-point regulation calling for improving the work style within the party in order to connect better with the public and reject extravagance, which has had a widespread impact throughout society. In September 2012, the State Council decided to introduce a National Low-carbon Day, starting in 2013. On June 17 2013, a series of National Low-carbon Day events were jointly held by the National Development and Reform Commission and the Beijing municipal government. The events included an exhibition on climate change themed “Beautiful Chinese Dream; Low-carbon China,” producing and broadcasting videos on low-carbon development for the public, as well as launching a “Low-carbon China” event. General Secretary of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon visited the exhibition on climate change and spoke highly of it. By 2012, a total of 152 cities in China have pledged to hold Car-free Days, organized by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-rural Development. The China Meteorological Administration has organized and produced a multilingual public welfare advert for TV and the catalog “Combating Climate Change, China Is Taking Action 2012.” On National Low-carbon Day, events were organized in cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, Guangzhou and Hangzhou to raise public awareness of low-carbon development. In July 2013, the 2013 Global Eco-forum “Building eco-civilization: green transformation and transition” opened in Guiyang. Extensive research was carried out on how green industry, urbanization and consumption can lead the sustainable development, and a broad consensus was formed.
(II) Extensive Media Publicity
In 2012, the Chinese media have carried varied and informative coverage of climate change, energy saving, environmental protection and low-carbon development. Xinhua News Agency, the People's Daily, China Central Television (CCTV). News media, including China Radio International, China Daily and China News Agency, sent journalists to cover the 2012 Doha Climate Change Conference. News websites, such as www.xinhuanet.com, www.china.org.cn and www.chinanews.com, gave special coverage on the conference using texts, photos, audio and video, making positive contributions to creating good atmosphere for public opinion and disseminating the knowledge of climate change. CCTV and other media organizations produced documentaries such as “Facing Climate Change,” “The Warming Earth,” “Climate Change: A Global Concern” and Warm and Cold, We Share Together”. They also produced a public-interest advertisement for TV for the National Low-carbon Day. Radio programs with the theme of “Advocating low-carbon life, promoting energy saving” The Chinese media took measures to promote the concept of environmental protection and low-carbon consumption. The China Economic Herald and other media organizations selected top 10 news stories on addressing climate change and promoting low-carbon development in China in 2012. Beijing Daily and other media organizations held a large-scale event promoting environmental protection with the theme of “Green Beijing·Low-carbon Commuting.” China News Agency held a photography exhibition, “Low-carbon Development and Green Life.”
(III) Organization Initiatives
The activity “Cool China, National Low-carbon Action” was carried out in 11 Chinese cities by the Department of Education and Communications under the Ministry of Environmental Protection, National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (NCSC), Green Commuting Fund under China Association for NGO Cooperation. During the National Low-carbon Day period, many enterprises and NGOs including PetroChina, Vanke and Green Commuting Fund formed the China Low Carbon Action League and issued the declaration of the league. The China Green Carbon Foundation launched an event called “buying a carbon sink online, fulfilling the obligation to plant trees” in 10 Chinese cities and national ministries. The 2013 International Expo on Low-carbon Industry was jointly held by the China Association of Low Carbon and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). The China Light Industry Internet and other organizations ran the event “Low-carbon action, ride across China.” The “Green Land” campaign was carried out by China Society of Territorial Economists with the support of the Chinese Association for Science and Technology. The Next Generation Working Committee and other organizations launched an event promoting low-carbon living in Chinese families in 10 cities across China including Beijing, Tianjin and Shijiazhuang. Communities, enterprises and schools in over 80 Chinese cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Dalian, Hong Kong and Macao took part in the Earth Hour event, organized by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).
(IV) Proactive Participation by the Public
Through education and training on climate change addressing, energy saving, emission reduction and low-carbon living, the public have gained a deeper understanding of climate change and have participated more widely and consciously. Increasing numbers of people have chosen to make low-carbon lifestyle choices in transport, as well as their eating habits and housing. Responding to climate change is becoming the conscious behavior of the whole society. The Clean Plate Campaign, which urged people to save food by not wasting anything on the table, was launched on Weibo in January 2013, and has drawn much attention from the public. An event featuring innovation in addressing climate change by 1,000 young environmental ambassadors was carried out in 2013 which has improved the young people's environmental leadership. Energy conservation campaigns have been carried out in families, communities, enterprises, organizations and schools in cities across China. Education activities with the theme of “Low-carbon, A healthy home life” were held in 15 cities including Nanjing, Shenzhen and Jinan, and 300,000 free publicity brochures have been distributed, to advocating a scientific concept of energy conservation and promote a low-carbon lifestyle.