Significant changes in China’s response to climate change

On Oct. 27, 2021 China released a white paper titled “Responding to Climate Change: China’s Policies and Actions“, the third chapter of which documented its significant changes in response to climate change. As a responsible major country, China is making its due contribution to the global response to climate change.

Infographic: Highlights of significant changes in China’s response to climate change

1. Coordinating Economic Development with Reductions in Pollution and Carbon Emissions

As is showed, China is committed to integrating green development into the whole process of economic development. China’s carbon intensity in 2020 was 18.8 percent lower than that in 2015, a better result than the binding target set in the 13th Five-year Plan (2016-2020). At the same time, China’s economy has achieved leapfrog development. Its GDP in 2020 was more than four times greater than in 2005.

2. Remarkable Results in Revolutionizing Energy Production and Consumption

China has committed to implementing a new energy security strategy, with major changes made in energy production and utilization, and historic achievements in energy development. Non-fossil energy is developing rapidly in China and China is rapidly reducing its energy consumption intensity. Preliminary calculations show that the reduction from 2011 to 2020 reached 28.7 percent, one of the fastest in the world.

3. Low-Carbon Industrial Transition Fueling Green Development

China has incorporated the concepts of putting the environment first and pursuing green development into its industrial upgrading. The new energy industry is witnessing strong growth. The latest revolution in science and technology and industrial transformation has accelerated the growth of the NEV industry. China has topped the world in NEV output and sales for the last six years. In June 2021 the country’s NEV fleet reached 6.03 million.

4. Marked Increase in the Carbon Sink Capacity of Ecosystems

China has taken various measures to build up the carbon sink capacity of ecosystems and ensure that forests, grasslands, wetlands, oceans, soil and frigid zones play their role in carbon sequestration. With the highest growth in forest coverage and the largest area of man-made forests, China leads the world in greening the planet. In the decade between 2010 and 2020, 7.2 million ha of marginal farmland were turned into forest and grassland. By 2020, vegetation coverage of its grasslands was 56.1 percent, and more than half of its wetland areas were under protection.

5. Green and Low Carbon Lifestyles Gaining Popularity

Green living is a prerequisite for building a beautiful China, and every member of society has become conscious of the need and is ready to act. Through regular activities, including those for National Energy Conservation Week, National Low Carbon Day and World Environment Day, China educates the public about climate change. It also promotes the concept of eco-civilization, including climate change and green development, in the national education system, and organizes training courses for the public on responding to climate change

SOURCE: Guangming Online, 2021-November-1.