Build Consensus and Strengthen Cooperation
to Advance the Historical Process of Combating Climate Change
Address by H.E. Wen Jiabao Premier of the State Council of the Peop le’s Republic of China at the Copenhagen Climate Change Summit
Copenhagen, 18 December 2009
Prime Minister Rasmussen, Dear Colleagues,
At this very moment, billions of people across the world are following closely what is happening here in Copenhagen. The will that we express and the commitments that we make here should help push forward mankind's historical process of combating climate change. Standing at this podium, I am deeply aware of the heavy responsibility.
Climate change is a major global challenge. It is the common mission of the entire mankind to curb global warming and save our planet. It is incumbent upon all of us, each and every country, nation, enterprise and individual to act, and act now in response to this challenge.
The past 30 years have seen remarkable progress in China's modernization drive. Let me share with you here that China has taken climate change very seriously in the course of its development. Bearing in mind the fundamental interests of the Chinese people and mankind's long-term development, we have exerted unremitting effort and made positive contribution to the fight against climate change.
China was the first developing country to adopt and implement a National Climate Change Program. We have formulated or revised the Energy Conservation Law, Renewable Energy Law, Circular Economy Promotion Law, Clean Production Promotion Law, Forest Law, Grassland Law and Regulations on Civil Building Efficiency. Laws and regulations have been an important means for us to address climate change.
China has made the most intensive efforts in energy conservation and pollution reduction in recent years. We have improved the taxation system and advanced the pricing reform of resource products with a view to putting in place at an early date a pricing mechanism that is responsive to market supply and demand, resource scarcity level and the cost of environmental damage. We have introduced 10 major energy conservation projects and launched an energy conservation campaign involving 1,000 enterprises, bringing energy-saving action to industry, transportation, construction and other key sectors. We have implemented pilot projects on circular economy, promoted energy-saving and environment-friendly vehicles and supported the use of energy-saving products by ordinary households with government subsidies. We have worked hard to phase out backward production facilities that are energy intensive and heavily polluting. The inefficient production capacity that China eliminated between 2006 and 2008 stood at 60.59 million tons for iron, 43.47 million tons of steel, 140 million tons for cement and 64.45 million tons for coke. By the end of the first half of this year, China's energy consumption per unit of GDP had dropped by 13 percent from the 2005 level, equivalent to reducing 800 million tons of carbon dioxide.
China has enjoyed the fastest growth of new energy and renewable energy. On the basis of protecting the eco-environment, we have developed hydro power in an orderly way, actively developed nuclear power, and encouraged and supported the development of renewable energy including biomass, solar and geothermal energy and wind power in the countryside, remote areas and other places with the proper conditions. Between 2005 and 2008, renewable energy increased by 51 percent, representing an annual growth rate of 14.7 percent. In 2008, the use of renewable energy reached an equivalent of 250 million tons of standard coal. A total of 30.5 million rural households gained access to bio-gas, equivalent to a reduction of 49 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions. China ranked first in the world in terms of installed hydro power capacity, nuclear power capacity under construction, the coverage of solar water heating panels and photovoltaic power capacity.
China has the largest area of man-made forests in the world. We have continued with the large-scale endeavor to return to farmland to forest and expand a forestation, and made vigorous effort to increase forest carbon sink. Between 2003 and 2008, China's forest coverage registered a net increase of 20.54 million hectares and forest stock volume rose by 1.123 billion cubic meters. The total area of man-made forests in China has reached 45 million hectares, the largest in the world.
中国有13亿人口,人均国内生产总值刚刚超过3000美元,按照联合国标准,还有1.5亿人生活在贫困线以下,发展经济、改善民生的任务十分艰巨。我国正处于工业化、城镇化快速发展的关键阶段,能源结构以煤为主,降低排放存在特殊困难。但是,我们始终把应对气候变化作为重要战略任务。1990至2005年,单位国内生产总值二氧化碳排放强度下降46%。在此基础上,我们又提出,到2020年单位国内生产总值二氧化碳排放比2005年下降40% - 45%,在如此长时间内这样大规模降低二氧化碳排放,需要付出艰苦卓绝的努力。我们的减排目标将作为约束性指标纳入国民经济和社会发展的中长期规划,保证承诺的执行受到法律和舆论的监督。我们将进一步完善国内统计、监测、考核办法,改进减排信息的披露方式,增加透明度,积极开展国际交流、对话与合作。
China has a 1.3 billion population and its per capita GDP has only exceeded 3,000 U. S. dollars. According to the U. N. standards, we still have 150 million people living below the poverty line and we therefore face the arduous task of developing the economy and improving people's livelihood. China is now at an important stage of accelerated industrialization and urbanization, and, given the predominant role of coal in our energy mix, we are confronted with special difficulty in emission reduction. However, we have always regarded addressing climate change as an important strategic task. Between 1990 and 2005, China's carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP were reduced by 46 percent. Building on that, we have set the new target of cutting carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 40-45 percent by 2020 from the 2005 level. To reduce carbon dioxide emissions on such a large scale and over such an extended period of time will require tremendous efforts on our part. Our target will be incorporated into China's mid-and-long term plan for national economic and social development as a mandatory one to ensure that its implementation is subject to the supervision by the law and public opinions. We will further enhance the domestic-statistical, monitoring and evaluation methods, improve the way for releasing emission reduction information, increase transparency and actively engage in international exchange, dialogue and cooperation.
To meet the climate challenge, the international community must strengthen confidence, build consensus, make vigorous effort and enhance cooperation. And we must always adhere to the following three principles:
聚了各方的广泛共识,是国际合作应对气候变化的法律基础和行动指南,必须倍加珍惜、巩固发展。本次会议的成果必须坚持而不能模糊公约及其议定书的基本原则,必须遵循而不能偏离“巴厘路线图”的授权,必须锁定而不能否定业已达成的共识和谈判取得的进展。First, maintaining the consistency of outcomes:
The campaign against climate change has not just started. In fact, the international community has been engaged in this endeavor for decades. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol are the outcomes of long and hard work by all countries. They reflect the broad consensus among all parties and serve as the legal basis and guide for international cooperation on climate change. And as such, they must be highly valued and further strengthened and developed. The outcome of this conference must stick to rather than obscure the basic principles enshrined in the Convention and the Protocol. It must follow rather than deviate from the mandate of the "Bali Roadmap". It should lock up rather than deny the consensus and progress already achieved in the negotiations.
Second, upholding the fairness of rules:
The principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities" represents the core and bedrock of international cooperation on climate change and it must never be compromised. Developed countries account for 80 percent of the total global carbon dioxide emissions since the Industrial Revolution over 200 years ago. If we all agree that carbon dioxide emissions are the direct cause for climate change, then it is all too clear who should take the primary responsibility. Developing countries only started industrialization a few decades ago and many of their people still live in abject poverty today. It is totally unjustified to ask them to undertake emission reduction targets beyond their due obligations and capabilities in disregard of historical responsibilities, per capita emissions and different levels of development. Developed countries, which are already leading an affluent life, still maintain a level of per capita emissions that is far higher than that of developing countries, and most of their emissions are attributed to consumption. In comparison, emissions from developing countries are primarily survival emissions and international transfer emissions. Today, 2.4 billion people in the world still rely on coal, charcoal, and stalks as main fuels, and 1.6 billion people have no access to electricity. Action on climate change must be taken within the framework of sustainable development and should by no means compromise the efforts of developing countries to get rid of poverty and backwardness. Developed countries must take the lead in making deep quantified emission cuts and provide financial and technological support to
developing countries. This is an unshakable moral responsibility as well as a legal obligation that they must fulfill. Developing countries should, with the financial and technological support of developed countries, do what they can to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change in the light of their national conditions.
And third, paying attention to the practicality of the targets:
There is a Chinese proverb which goes, "A one-thousand-mile journey starts with the first step." Similarly, there is a saying in the West which reads, "Rome was not built in one day." In tackling climate change, we need to take a long-term perspective, but more importantly, we should focus on the present. The Kyoto Protocol has clearly set out the emission reduction targets for developed countries in the first commitment period by 2012. However, a review of implementation shows that the emissions from many developed countries have increased rather than decreased. And the mid-term reduction targets recently announced by developed countries fall considerably short of the requirements of the Convention and the expectations of the international community. It’s necessary to set a direction for our long-term efforts, but it is even more important to focus on achieving near-term and mid-term reduction targets, honoring the commitments already made and taking real action. One action is more useful than a dozen programs. We should give people hope by taking credible actions.
Fourth, ensure the effectiveness of institutions and mechanisms:
Concrete actions and institutional guarantee are essential to our effort on tackling climate change. The international community should make concrete and effective institutional arrangements under the Convention and urge developed countries to honor their commitments, provide sustained and sufficient financial support to developing countries, speed up the transfer of climate-friendly technologies and effectively help developing countries, especially small island states, least developed countries, landlocked countries and African countries, strengthen their capacity in combating climate change.
I wish to conclude by underlining that it is with a sense of responsibility to the Chinese people and
the whole mankind that the Chinese government has set the target for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. This is a voluntary action China has taken in the light of its national circumstances. We have not attached any condition to the target, nor have we linked it to the target of any other country. We will honor our word with real action. Whatever outcome this conference may produce, we will be fully committed to achieving and even exceeding the target.
节能减排Energy conservation and pollution reduction
退耕还林和植树造林return to farmland to forest and expand a forestation
森林蓄积量forest stock volume
总体生态环境:the general ecological environment
温室效应:the greenhouse effect
森林覆盖面率:forest cover rate
水土保持conservation of water and soil
生态农业environment-friendly agriculture; eco-agriculture
水资源保护区water resource conservation zone
海水淡化sea water desalinization
可降解一次性塑料袋throwaway bio-degradable plastic bags
放射性废料积存accumulation of radioactive waste
厄尔尼诺南徊ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation)
世界环境日World Environment Day (June 5th each year)
国际生物多样性日International Biodiversity Day (29 December)
世界水日World Water Day (22 March)
世界气象日World Meteorological Day(23 March)
世界海洋日World Oceans Day (8 June )
转变传统观念,推行低碳经济(2008年)(Kick the habit! Towards a low carbon economy)
冰川消融,后果堪忧!(2007年)Melting Ice–a Hot Topic!
莫使旱地变荒漠!(2006年)Deserts and Desertification–Don't Desert Drylands!
营造绿色城市,呵护地球家园!(2005年)Green Cities –Plan for the Planet!
海洋存亡,匹夫有责!(2004年)Wanted! Seas and Oceans –Dead or Alive!
水——二十亿人生命之所系!(2003年)Water - Two Billion People are Dying for It!
让地球充满生机!(2002年)Give Earth a Chance!
世间万物生命之网!(2001年)Connect with the World Wide Web of life!
环境千年-行动起来吧!(2000年)The Environment Millennium - Time to Act!
联合国环境规划署United Nations Environment Programs (UNEP)
联合国人类居住中心UN Center for Human Settlements (UNCHS)
中国生物多样性保护行动计划China Biological Diversity Protection Action Plan
中国跨世纪绿色工程规划China Trans-Century Green Project Plan
国家环境保护总局State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA)
中国环保基本方针China’s guiding principles for environme ntal protection
Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal
Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer
生物多样性公约Convention on Biological Diversity
防治荒漠化国际公约Convention to Combat Desertification
21世纪议程Agenda 21 (the international plan of action adopted by governments in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro Brazil(巴西里约), provides the global consensus on the road map towards sustainable development)
联合国环境与发展大会(环发大会)United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED)
哥本哈根气候变化会议Copenhagen Climate Change Summit incumbent
《联合国气候变化框架公约》The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 《京都议定书》the Kyoto Protocol
High utilization of resources and high level consumption
First pollute the environment and then take counter-measures
Pursue the strategy of sustainable development
Awaken the whole nation to the importance of environmental protection
Adhere to the basic state policy of environmental protection
Protect the earth's environment -- the homeland of all mankind
Protecting the environment is every citizen's responsibility and obligation.
The attention to environment issue has become an irreversible historical trend.
Practical measures need to be taken to improve the environment.
We are expected to endeavor to obtain high socio-economic benefits and a well-preserved environment with less investment and less consumption of resources.
To carry out the three major policies, namely “putting prevention first and combining preven tion with treatment”, “making the polluters responsible for treating” and “intensifying environment administration”
贯彻经济建设、城乡建设、环境建设同步规划、同步实施、同步发展(三同步)的方针carry out a strategy of synchronized planning, implementation and development in terms of economic an d urban and rural development and environmental protection (the “three synchronizes” principle)
节约资源,适度消费,协调发展,全面调控,综合治理,恢复生态平衡:saving natural resources, promoting moderate consumption, paying attention to coordinated development , implementing overall adjustment and control, protecting the environment comprehensively and restoring the ecological balance