Country's climate actions can help secure Paris deal

By Fu Jing
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China Daily, November 3, 2015
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And after laws related to fighting air and water pollution and realizing a circular economy, China's law-making body is also busy drafting a law on climate change prevention, which should be another milestone in the country's environmental protection. But what is most encouraging is China has pledged to realize a peak in its carbon emissions by 2030 by improving energy efficiency and increasing the ratio of renewable energy in its total energy mix, which is targeted at 15 percent by 2020 and 20 percent by 2030.

It has also made a pledge to lower carbon emissions per unit of GDP by 60 to 65 percent from the 2005 level by 2030.

In its bid to turn greener, China has also quickened the pace of trying to usher in a nationwide cap-and-trade emission system by 2017, and a carbon emission trade system is being piloted in some regions at present.

And surprisingly, China, which has mainly been powered by coal for years, saw its consumption of coal decline last year for the first time mainly as a result of better energy efficiency and economic restructuring.

Along with these domestic actions, China has spared no effort on the bilateral and international levels as well. Since last year, President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Barack Obama have twice made presidential announcements about injecting inputs aimed at making Paris a success. China and the European Union announced joint commitments and actions in June as well.

Meanwhile, China has been pledging and taking increased actions in South-South cooperation by embedding more sustainability content, and it has been busy coordinating with the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), who share similar stances on climate change.

All in all, China has taken climate actions as a trigger to institutional and legal framework improvement, development pattern transformation, lifestyle changes and also a chance to showcase its rising desire to be a responsible global stakeholder.

Being so well prepared, China, together with other players, should be able to make it the bottom line that Paris proves more fruitful than Copenhagen.

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