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Zhang Gaoli Attends UN Climate Summit and Delivers Speech
2014/09/24

On September 23 local time, Special Envoy of President Xi Jinping and Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli attended the United Nations (UN) Climate Summit at the UN headquarters in New York and delivered a speech entitled "Build Consensus and Put it into Implementation to Establish a Cooperative and Win-win Global Climate Governance System".

Zhang Gaoli said in his speech that China attaches great importance to tackling climate change and is willing to work with the international community to actively tackle the grave challenge of climate change. As President Xi Jinping pointed out, tackling climate change is the intrinsic requirement of China's sustainable development as well as the international obligations of a responsible major country. This is not at others' request but on our own initiative. China was the first among developing countries to formulate and implement the national scheme to deal with climate change, and recently has launched the "National Plan for Coping with Climate Change" to guarantee the realization of the target of cutting the carbon emission intensity by 40 to 45 percent by 2020 from the 2005 level. China is committed to actively promoting energy conservation and emission reduction, low-carbon development and ecological construction, and has made remarkable achievements. Compared with 2005, the carbon emission intensity in China dropped by 28.5% in 2013, which was equivalent to a reduction of 2.5 billion tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

Zhang Gaoli said that China is a developing country with a population of 1.3 billion, facing arduous tasks of developing the economy, improving the people's livelihood and protecting the environment. As a responsible major country, China will tackle climate change with greater efforts to achieve better results, and take the initiative to undertake international obligations in conformity with its own national conditions, development stage and actual capabilities. China will set forth the post-2020 action target for tackling climate change as soon as possible to remarkably reduce the carbon emission intensity, increase the proportion of non-fossil fuels, and raise the forest stock, and will strive to achieve the peak of total carbon dioxide emissions at an early date.

Zhang Gaoli said that China will accelerate energy production and consumption revolution, firmly control the total energy consumption, increase energy efficiency, vigorously develop non-fossil fuels, strengthen atmospheric pollution control and ecological construction, accelerate the establishment of the carbon trading market, strengthen technical innovation, enhance the social awareness of green low-carbon development, and strive to blaze a path of sustainable development with win-win results of maintaining economic growth while tackling climate change.

Zhang Gaoli said that China will vigorously promote the South-South cooperation in tackling climate change, double its annual financial support on the existing basis from next year, and set up the South-South Cooperation Fund on Climate Change. Apart from this, China will provide six million USD to support the UN Secretary General in advancing the South-South cooperation in tackling climate change.

Zhang Gaoli stressed that China firmly supports the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris in reaching its agreements as scheduled. He put forward three points of proposals:

First, stick to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and follow its principles. The negotiation process and final results of the 2015 agreements should be in accordance with the principles of common but differentiated responsibilities, impartiality and self-capacity, so as to strengthen the comprehensive, effective and continuous implementation of the provisions and commitments set out in the convention.

Second, fulfill respective commitments and consolidate the basis of mutual trust. All parties should implement the consensus reached, especially the developed countries should intensify their emission reduction and fulfill their commitment of annual financial support of 100 billion USD and technology transfer to developing countries by 2020.

Third, strengthen future-oriented actions and enhance capabilities to address climate change. Both developed and developing countries should follow the path of green and low-carbon development in accordance with their own national conditions, set forth post-2020 action plans from a practical standpoint, take more powerful measures and strengthen practical cooperation in earnest efforts, so as to make new efforts and contributions to tackling climate change.

Zhang Gaoli finally said that tackling climate change is the common cause of the mankind. China is willing to strengthen communication, build consensus, and unite with all countries, and take the responsibility to build a cooperative and win-win global climate governance system, so as to effectively tackle climate change and jointly create a better future for the mankind.

Delegates from more than 200 countries and international organizations attended the Summit. President Barack Obama of the US, President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, President Baron Waqa of Nauru, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon of the UN and others also delivered speeches at the plenary meeting.

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