Climate Negotiation Diary #3: My Position as Delegate of China

“We will step up effort to develop green economy, low-carbon economy and circular economy, and enhance research, development and dissemination of climate-friendly technologies.” – Hu Jianto
According to Fourth Assessment Report released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), it is very likely that anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are causing the global warming of the planet.

With your presence today, Honorable Chairs, Fellow Delegates, and Distinguished Guests the future shall be in our control. Based on mutual benefit, practical and effective principle, China actively participates and promotes international cooperation in the field of climate change, playing a constructive role.
Sharing your concern, China is as much vulnerable to adverse effects of climate change, which has posed substantial threat to the natural ecological systems as well as the economic and social development of the country. For China, these threats are particularly pressing in the field of agriculture, animal husbandry, forestry, natural ecological systems and water resources, and in coastal and ecological fragile zone. Therefore for China, adaptation is an urgent task. In phase of rapid economic development and with multiple pressures of developing the economy, eliminating poverty and mitigating the emissions of greenhouse gases, China is confronted with difficulties in its efforts to address climate change. Chinese government recognizes problematic coal-based economic growth is not sustainable, and looks to upgrade to energy mix and develop low carbon energy. China looks forward to large scale emission mitigations to prevent anthropogenic interference with climate change for we hold responsibility to our future generation.

China’s climate change policy consists of four main principles. Firstly, China basic understanding of UNFCC and Kyoto Protocol stems from Bali Road Map. This calls for Ad Hoc Working Group on Longer term Cooperation Action (AWG-LCA) under the UNFCCC. Secondly, China aligns its attitude with common but differentiated responsibility principle. Speaking on behalf of the group such as BASIC and G77, this gives Non-Annex II parties and Countries in transition (CIT) to prioritize economy and fight poverty while justifiable setting Annex II parties to take role in reducing emissions substantially. Thirdly, sustainable development is a crucial tenet thus, Chins pursues, promises and enforces green and low-carbon development. Lastly, China supports packaged arrangement of emission mitigations, climate change adaption, and climate change fund and technology transfer. Here not merely a request but a call onto Annex II to come forward in assisting Non-Annex I and Countries In Transition with funding and technology fundamental to combat climate change.
China’s main determinants that accounts for climate change include sovereign condition, domestic priority and historical responsibility. Where China assert to utilize, develop and protect its own natural resources in line with non-intervention principle, it asks for all Annex parties to respect the fact China continues to inject flexibilities and cooperation with all its full heart. Secondly, China’s domestic priority puts economic growth ahead of any other agenda where it needs to grow to help citizenry get rid of poverty. This leads China to constantly employ coal as basis of energy system, while Anex I and Anex II can understand that this requires a reliance on carbon-intensive industries. As a reminder, this has been recognized and respected by UNFCC. The last determinant is China calls for climate equity and historical responsibly by Anex II parties. This is supported by the fact, from 1900 to 2006, China contributes 8% to world’s cumulative energy-related carbon emission meanwhile parties of Anex I in cumulative, and per capita are the largest emitter.

Today China like to departure conversation from the Durban Climate Talks that led to coalition building with EU, Alliance of Small Island States (AOISIS), the Africa Group of Negotiators and Least Developed Countries Group despite tragic exist of Japan, Russia and Canada. Working with EU and US China looks to explore carbon tariffs and invites others to come aboard. On the other hand, China before has appealed to avoid unilateral trade restrictive border measure that erode countries interest in international trade by asking to avoid measures such as aviation carbon tariff. Towards Annex III and CIT, China calls for compromise through binding commitment and rebuilding of differentiation while China seeks to balance between CBDR principle and binding that respects China’s sovereignty. Furthermore, China searches for equity, sustainable development and seeks for proposal to operationalize equity into future climate regime.
China is obligated to address the developments of clean revolution strategy which embodies an ambitious energy revolution. Firstly, for an energy path to low carbon development, china is the largest wind power capacity in the world and is developing a dynamic market for electric vehicle. Moreover, China continues to embark on its pledge to reduce carbon-intensity by 40-45% by 2020 which is in-line with Chinese domestic law. In addition, China is working to develop sophisticated Emission Trading System (ETS) and is anxious to utilize this market-based instrument. Lastly, China also seeks strong energy cooperation with Germany and EU countries to acquire competitive edge in energy related technologies.

Climate change is a common challenge confronting the whole world, and demands the joint efforts of all countries and the entire international community. China will work unremittingly for global sustainable development with other countries and continuously make new contribution to the protection of the climate system.


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