Climate representative wins Lui Che Woo Prize

Updated: 2017-10-04 07:50

By Honey Tsang in Hong Kong(HK Edition)

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Xie Zhenhua gets prestigious award for contributing to Paris Agreement

China's special representative on climate change Xie Zhenhua received the Lui Che Woo Prize on Tuesday for his decades-long work developing China's low-carbon green economy. His efforts culminated in his contribution to the signing of the Paris Agreement by 195 countries in 2015.

Xie received the award, entitled Sustainability Prize, from Tung Chee-hwa, former chief executive of Hong Kong and vice-chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, at a ceremony on Tuesday.

 Climate representative wins Lui Che Woo Prize

This year's winners of the Lui Che Woo Prize - Xie Zhenhua (second left), China's special representative on climate change; Chris Jochnick (right), representing international NGO Landesa; and Philip Craven (left), representing the International Paralympic Committee - pose with Hong Kong business magnate Lui Che-woo, who set up the prize in 2015, at the award ceremony on Tuesday. Provided to China Daily

The laureate helped bring together most developing and developed countries to join the Paris Agreement. All parties agreed to set out global action plans to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

The agreement has been considered a historic milestone for most countries which have agreed to limit the temperature rises to below 2 C by this century.

Xie said in his acceptance speech the award was not only for him, but also recognition of the Chinese central government's long-term efforts to achieve sustainable development through a green economy.

"Being awarded the Lui Che Woo Prize is great encouragement for me," he said. "I'll continue to contribute to sustainable development and the well-being of future generations."

Climate representative wins Lui Che Woo Prize

Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, who officiated at the ceremony, said: "Xie Zhenhua channeled his diplomatic skills in making a remarkable consensus through international negotiations. This led to the successful conclusion of multinational agreement that has helped mitigate climate change."

Three Lui Che Woo Prizes were presented this year. The second, under Welfare Betterment category, was given to Landesa, an international NGO that secured land rights for more than 120 million of the world's poorest families in over 50 countries.

The third prize in the Positive Energy category was given to the International Paralympic Committee, an international NGO based in Germany. This was for its role in promoting the Paralympic Games.

"The awards are meant to promote harmony in the world. This is to cultivate civilization, promote interpersonal understanding on the very grounds of morality," Lui Che-woo, founder and chairman of the Board of Governors cum Prize Council of the Lui Che Woo Prize, said at the ceremony.

Founded in 2015, the annual Lui Che Woo Prize honors individuals and organizations which have made remarkable achievements championing the welfare of humanity. Each prizewinner is given a cash reward of HK$20 million, a certificate and a trophy.

Paying tribute to the spirit of the prize, Xie said he is going to donate all the prize money to Tsinghua University Education Foundation, his alma mater, and further promote prevention of climate change.

(HK Edition 10/04/2017 page5)