The Chinese government is taking a series of aggressive measures
to reduce air pollution in the run-up to the Olympic Games, a senior US environmental
adviser said yesterday, and pledged to work together with the
country on a long-term plan to tackle global warming.
James Connaughton, chairman of the US Council on Environmental
Quality, said he was encouraged by the very significant shift in
China's environmental policy during recent years, noting that the
11th Five-Year Plan guiding China's
development between 2006 and 2010 emphasizes the importance of
building an environmentally-friendly economy.
"China has slowly and effectively worked the philosophy of
harmonious society into the policy and now the task is to translate
the policy into implementation," he said.
"I think there are great challenges in China, but I've been
encouraged by the innovation at the governmental level," he
Connaughton said there is an emerging consensus that the
solution to climate change is the advancement of technology, which
requires to be paid for by growing economies.
"And America stands ready to assist in technology, to assist in
innovative financing and assist in standards and practices so that
together we can grow our economies in a more sustainable way," he
As the United States struggled for years to implement strong
environmental protection policies, Connaughton expressed confidence
in China, saying: "We did it in less than 30 years. China can do it
in less than 30 years, and that's what we look forward to."
Connaughton is in Beijing to prepare for a conference on climate
change in Washington next month, which was initiated by US
President George W. Bush and will be attended by leading economies
During his China trip, Connaughton visited the world's largest
coal methane power plant in North China's Shanxi Province. It was agreed at the second
China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue that up to 15 large-scale
coalmine methane capture and utilization projects would be
developed in China over the next five years.
(China Daily August 15, 2007)