China looks to take increasing role in the fight against climate change

World Today

Representatives from nearly 200 countries are in Bonn, Germany for the 23rd Conference of the Parties—or COP23—to talk about climate change.

As CGTN’s Grace Shao reports, China has increasingly been at the forefront in the fight against climate change.

The leader in advocating climate change awareness used to be the EU. Now, China is stepping into that role.

That’s according to Chai Qimin, the International Cooperation Department Chief of the National Center for Climate Change and International Cooperation.

China is becoming more involved in litigation and the bankrolling of clean projects. As a huge emerging market, Chai said that China’s focus on green development will be vital to both social and economic growth.

“We still are developing countries. We have lots of other social economy (sic) task to do,” Chai explained. “But we stick to our commitment under the Paris Agreement.”

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) is the world’s largest non-governmental conservation organization. Its main goal is the reduction of humanity’s impact on the environment. Sze Ping Lo—the group’s leader in China—said that COP23 can be a key turning point.

“The WWF has been working in China for three decades,” Lo said. “We’ve witnessed the country changing from focusing on economic growth and wealth generation to a more balanced, inclusive mode of development, particularly accelerated in the last two, three years.”

Lo added that an ecological civilization can’t just be a slogan. He said it can only hold if deep institutional changes are implemented, green policies are set, and citizens are made more aware of the impact of their daily actions.

Furthermore, Lo believes that the conference in Bonn will be vital—both in setting the framework for pre-2020 climate actions and in facilitating the ambitions of countries to reach their national targets between 2020 and 2030.