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South-South efforts key to climate work

2021/4/26 10:56:09
President Xi Jinping addresses the Leaders Summit on Climate via video link from Beijing on Thursday. Xi delivered an important speech titled "For Man and Nature: Building a Community of Life Together" at the two-day event hosted by the United States. [Photo/Xinhua]

President urges rich nations to 'refrain from creating green trade barriers'

In a move to further implement President Xi Jinping's call for South-South cooperation regarding climate change, China will beef up support for developing nations' efforts to tackle the global crisis to the best of its ability, though rich countries are more obliged to offer the support according to international conventions, officials said.

"As we in China often say, 'It is more important to show people how to fish than just giving them fish'," Xi said on Thursday while delivering a speech via video link at the virtual Leaders Summit on Climate.

China has done its best to help developing countries build capacity against climate change through various forms of results-oriented South-South cooperation. "Such cooperation has yielded real, tangible and solid results," he said.

It's not the first time for Xi to talk about South-South climate cooperation on international occasions.

In his address at the opening of the United Nations climate change conference in Paris in 2015, Xi announced that China would set up 10 pilot low-carbon industrial parks and launch 100 climate mitigation and adaptation programs in developing countries. The president also promised to provide poor nations with 1,000 training opportunities on climate change.

While addressing the opening ceremony of the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in April 2019, Xi said China would work with relevant countries to jointly implement the Belt and Road South-South Cooperation Initiative on Climate Change.

Sun Zhen, deputy director general of the climate change department under the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said China has been proactively implementing President Xi's initiatives on South-South climate cooperation since 2015.

"Since that year, China has carried out South-South climate cooperation projects with over 20 countries in Africa, Asia, Oceania and South America," Sun said in an interview with China Daily ahead of the climate summit.

He said, amid joint efforts to promote pilot low-carbon demonstration zones, China has donated a series of materials and equipment to facilitate other developing nations to mitigate and adapt to climate change, including electric vehicles, a satellite and environmental monitoring facilities.

While offering the support, China has given priority to the least developed countries, African nations and small island states, Sun added.

For example, in December, China provided a satellite, as well as its application system, to Ethiopia to help the African nation tackle climate change, according to the ministry.

Sun said that to date, China has provided training to about 1,000 officials and technicians in climate-related posts from almost 100 developing nations. The country will resume offline training according to the global COVID-19 situation.

More new climate cooperation programs will be developed as China proactively promotes South-South cooperation, he added.

Concrete roadmap

According to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the 2015 Paris Agreement, however, it's the obligation of rich nations to support developing countries in their climate efforts under a principle acknowledging the differing capabilities and responsibilities of individual countries in addressing climate change.

Considering the differences, as part of the Paris outcome, developed countries were urged to scale up their level of support with a concrete road map to achieve the goal of mobilizing $100 billion per year by 2020 for climate action in developing countries.

Many developing nations, however, have long complained that the pledged support has yet to fully materialize.

Addressing the summit on Thursday, President Xi called on developed countries to "make concrete efforts to help developing countries strengthen capacity and resilience against climate change, support them in financing, technology and capacity building, and refrain from creating green trade barriers so as to help developing countries accelerate the transition to green and low-carbon development".

Zhou Dadi, a member of China's National Expert Committee on Climate Change, said China advocates tackling climate change through equal cooperation and joint efforts of developed and developing nations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Organized by China Green Carbon Foundation  

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