2019-10 23
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Cooperation in clean energy to expand, Xi says



China to push sustainable development, bring more benefits, president vows in letter to forum The country is ready to work with the international community to strengthen all-around energy cooperation, safeguard energy security and address climate change, President Xi Jinping said on Tuesday. China will also cooperate with other countries to promote ecological and environmental protection, push sustainable development and bring more benefits to people around the world, Xi said in a congratulatory letter sent to the Taiyuan Energy Low Carbon Development Forum, which opened on Tuesday in Taiyuan, Shanxi province. The forum runs through Thursday. Low-carbon energy development concerns the future of humanity, Xi said, adding that China attaches great importance to such development and actively promotes energy consumption, supply, technology and institutional transformation. Vice-Premier Han Zheng attended the opening ceremony of the forum and said that all parties should enhance cooperation in energy security, clean energy and energy infrastructure to provide strong support for global sustainable development and the realization of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals. Han, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, made the remark on Monday during his meeting with foreign guests attending the forum. He said major changes in the global energy picture and the evolution of geopolitics have brought about challenges to the stability of the international energy market and the balance of supply and demand. "The Chinese government always attaches great importance to energy security and the development of clean low-carbon energy, and it stands ready to deepen cooperation with all parties," he said. Former Czech prime minister Bohuslav Sobotka said the world thinks highly of China's leading role in coping with climate change and promoting sustainable development. He expressed expectations of sharing low-carbon development experience and jointly strengthening global energy cooperation to realize clean growth through the forum. China has shown unwavering determination and strong commitment to practicing low-carbon energy development and promoting clean energy use to tackle climate change, analysts said. Liu Zhenmin, under-secretary-general for economic and social affairs at the UN, said he commends the government of China for its leadership on clean energy development and its efforts to promote renewable energy infrastructure at home and all over the world. Liu also praised Shanxi province for being well-positioned to provide a platform for sharing its experiences and discussing opportunities for promoting energy transformation and sustainable development. U Ohn Winn, union minister at Myanmar's Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation, said the forum is very timely as the world urgently needs action to achieve the Paris climate agreement goal of limiting global temperature increases to 1.5 C by striving in earnest to fulfill the commitments on mitigation and adaptation. Alan Searl, director of the International Energy Agency's China cooperation department, said energy transition is a global and intergenerational process. Source: China Daily Date: October 23, 2019

2019-10 19
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Hong Kong to strengthen ability to combat climate change



HONG KONG, Oct. 18 (Xinhua) -- Shun Chi-ming, director of the Hong Kong Observatory, said Hong Kong had been hit by super typhoons in recent years and should gear up to combat climate change. The Hong Kong Observatory said in a statement on Friday that it jointly hosted an academic session with two working groups of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Thursday in Hong Kong. Featuring the salient points of the three special reports published by the IPCC in the past year, the session provided participants with the opportunity to discuss and exchange views on the latest scientific findings in the field of climate change and its relevance to Hong Kong. The three reports are the Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius, the Special Report on Climate Change and Land, and the Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate, which summarized the impacts of climate change on land, ocean, the cryosphere and ecosystems. According to the reports, the land surface air temperature has risen nearly twice as much as the global average temperature since the pre-industrial period, leading to more frequent and intense weather extremes. Furthermore, if global carbon emissions continue to show no signs of abating, the global sea level rise for year 2100 is projected to be 10 cm higher than that in the previous assessment, representing a 14-percent increase. At the meeting, Shun cited the destructive power of storm surges brought to Hong Kong by super typhoons Hato and Mangkhut in 2017 and 2018 respectively. He stressed that Hong Kong is not immune to the impacts of climate change, and mitigation, adaptation and resilience measures are most important in combating climate change. Shun added that the Hong Kong Observatory will continue to provide scientific input to support the work of the relevant departments of China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government. It will also make ongoing efforts to help raise public awareness of climate change and its impacts through education, so as to enhance the community's preparedness and resilience. Source: Xinhua Date: October 19, 2019

2019-10 17
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Chinese-made electric vehicles ply along LatAm's first mass transit electric corridor



SANTIAGO, Oct. 16 (Xinhua) -- After helping build Latin America's first mass transit electric corridor in Chile, China has supplied the key components of the corridor: fleets of eco-friendly electric buses. The Chinese-made buses run on rechargeable batteries, and boast a host of modern amenities, including Wi-Fi and USB ports, offering commuters in the capital Santiago better traveling experience in urban public transportation. "Public transport is an essential part of our quality of life," Chilean President Sebastian Pinera said on Tuesday, as he unveiled the latest fleet of 183 new electric buses manufactured by Chinese electric vehicle maker BYD, an industry leader. "A good public transit system that's safer, more comfortable, quieter and faster, improves quality of life," said Pinera. "We are taking this big leap forward and toward the future," he added, noting that "outside China, Santiago is the city with the most electric buses." Santiago's drive towards sustainability has been turbocharged as the city prepares to host a landmark international climate change conference in December, the 25th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP25) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The Chinese government is doing its part by donating 20 electric buses to help shuttle conference participants during the gathering, Chilean Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications Gloria Hutt told Xinhua. According to Hutt, China, as a "pioneer in the development of the technologies behind electric mobility in ... public transit," has been an inspiration to Chile. "Borrowing China's experience, we adopted the same kinds of solutions, and they have been very successful," said Hutt. Source: Xinhua Date:  October 17, 2019

2019-10 10
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China pledges green development as Beijing horticultural expo concludes



BEIJING, Oct. 9 -- The International Horticultural Exhibition 2019 Beijing concluded Wednesday with a festive ceremony, at which Chinese Premier Li Keqiang delivered a speech and announced its closing. Extending congratulations on the success of the expo and gratitude toward the people who supported and attended the event, Li said in his speech that the horticultural expo, themed "Live Green, Live Better," was a great gathering for mutual learning among different civilizations, sharing new green technologies and experiencing the richness of nature. Remaining the world's largest developing country, China will continue to focus on economic development and solve problems through development, he said, stressing that China will stick to a holistic approach to pursue both high-quality economic development and high-standard environmental protection through reform and opening-up. He promised that the country will transform its development pattern, promote green development, contain pollution, enhance international cooperation, support multilateralism, uphold the principles of common but differentiated responsibilities, equity and respective capabilities, and actively implement the Paris Agreement. Vicente Gonzalez Loscertales, secretary general of the Bureau of International Expositions, and Bernard Oosterom, president of the International Association of Horticultural Producers, also addressed the ceremony, congratulating the success of the expo and expressing their confidence that the world will achieve green, low-carbon and sustainable development of higher level through joint efforts. Foreign leaders attending the closing ceremony included Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Solomon Islands' Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong, Kyrgyz First Deputy Prime Minister Kubatbek Boronov and Azerbaijani Deputy Prime Minister Hajibala Abutalybov. Before the ceremony, Li and the foreign leaders toured the horticultural exhibitions at the China Pavilion. Starting from April 29, the horticultural expo, attended by 110 countries and international organizations, had welcomed nearly 10 million visits. Source: Xinhua Date: 10-10-2019

2019-09 27
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Small but significant steps, China creates green miracles



BEIJING, Sept. 26 -- A number of daily actions such as taking the subway, paying utility bills online or simply walking will earn users "green energy" points, and once they reach a certain amount, a real tree will be planted. Many Chinese netizens have planted trees through the popular Alipay Ant Forest activity, which was launched on Alipay, a leading mobile payment platform in China, by Ant Financial Services Group, promoting greener lifestyles by inspiring users to reduce carbon emissions in their daily lives. Last week, Ant Forest won the 2019 Champions of the Earth award for turning the "green good deeds of half a billion people" into real trees planted in some of China's most arid regions, according to a statement from the UN Environment. Since its launch in August 2016, Ant Forest and its NGO partners have planted about 122 million trees in China's driest areas, which include regions in Inner Mongolia, Gansu, Qinghai and Shanxi. This is one of the ways that the relay of planting trees is carried on today. The relay, slow but significant, actually started decades ago and has turned into green miracles. In north China's Hebei Province, one such green miracle was made thanks to generations of persistent efforts. Saihanba, about 400 km north of Beijing, almost became a wasteland in the 1950s. To change the situation, hundreds of people began to plant trees in 1962. Planting trees was tough in Saihanba, where winter could last seven months and temperatures could drop to minus 43 degrees. Trees had to survive drought, frosts and pests. Over the past years, three generations of green enthusiasts from Saihanba have managed to turn the once barren land into a vast forest covering about 93,000 hectares. Saihanba has become an important ecological shield for Beijing and Tianjin, critically important to water and air quality for the Beijing-Tianjin area. In 2017, the Saihanba afforestation community also won the UN Champions of the Earth Award for its outstanding contribution to the restoration of degraded landscapes. In past decades, China has invested enormous efforts in green development, including the adoption of the world's first law on tackling desertification, the return of farmland to grass and a ban on natural forest logging. In the 1980s, China enshrined environmental protection as a fundamental national policy. The sustainable development strategy was formulated and put into practice in the 1990s. Since 2012, the development of ecological civilization has gained greater momentum. Now the country follows a maxim illustrated in the catchphrase: "Lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets." China has promised to increase its forest coverage to 23.04 percent by 2020, and to 26 percent by 2035. China, one of the first countries to sign the Paris Agreement on climate change, has pledged to halt the rise in carbon dioxide emissions by around 2030. A study using data from NASA satellites shows in February that China had contributed to at least one-fourth of the increase in the global green leaf area since the early 2000s. "Environmental protection work in China has never stopped and we are marching on our way to a greener home," said Qu Geping, 90, a former senior environment official who has been engaged in China's environmental protection work for over five decades. Source: Xinhua Date: September 27, 2019