Countries must 'work together' to reduce emissions

By Wu Chong (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-06-09 09:04

Developing countries are expected to embrace more dynamic cooperation on climate change issues after the G8 Summit, with the positive effort of all parties including China, local experts and officials have said.

President Hu Jintao promised on Friday at the summit that China would strengthen cooperation with other developing countries "within the framework of South-South cooperation".

"In particular, we will continue to do what we can to help African countries and small island developing states build capacity to tackle climate change," he said.

Zou Ji, an assistant professor at Renmin University of China, said the move signals a new development in China's climate change strategy, which echoes its persistent policy that multilateral collaboration is necessary in addressing the issue.

Zou, one of the leading Chinese authors of the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), said President Hu's acknowledgement of the significance of South-South cooperation in battling climate change would inspire future dialogue between developing countries.

Lu Xuedu, deputy director of the office of global environmental affairs at the Ministry of Science and Technology, said China will "expand support" for those countries to improve their economic and technological positions as well as capacity building relating to adaptations for climate change.

"The assistance will include financial aid, staff training and cooperation on scientific research," Lu said.

Pan Jiahua, director of the research center for sustainable development at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the future cooperation model between developing countries on this issue should be a "share of technologies and experiences" rather than simply assistance.

"For example, we have some mature energy-saving technologies, such as solar heating systems and bio-gas, which we can exchange with African and South American countries for what they have, such as biofuel development technologies," he said.

It is also "very positive" that President Hu publicly acknowledged the European Union's decision to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2020, Pan, who is also a leading Chinese author of IPCC Report IV, said.

It was the first time Chinese leaders had given such a clear and warm welcome to the EU's plan, and actually conveyed multiple messages, he said.

"First, it was to call for more action from other developed countries, which had been reacting slowly to climate change issues," Pan said.

Despite developed countries being responsible for most of the greenhouse gases that have contributed to global warming, most of them have been slow to reduce emissions.

Last year, the Global Carbon Project released a report saying emissions of carbon dioxide resulting from human activities were actually growing at a rate of 2.5 percent a year, compared with 1 percent before 2000.

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