China to back Samoa on climate change: Ambassador

By Marc Membrere 30 October 2021, 8:54PM

The Ambassador of China to Samoa, Chao Xiaoliang, has assured that China stands together with Samoa to tackle the country's climate change challenges.

In a statement issued on Friday, Ambassador Xiaoliang said in the lead up to the COP26 scheduled to be held in Glasgow from 31 October to 12 November, the world is focusing on the growing tension in the human versus nature relationship. 

"As friendly countries connected by the beautiful Pacific Ocean, China and Samoa have common interests and consensus on protecting our shared home," Ambassador Xiaoliang said.

"China appreciates Samoa’s achievements in its response to climate change and ecological conservation and adhere the commitments to safeguarding the earth on which mankind depends.

 "As Chinese President Xi Jinping addressed at the UN summit on biodiversity (COP15) in Kunming this month, China has been honoring its pledge in biodiversity conservation and climate actions. 

"As a developing country with over 1.4bn population that has not completed industrialization or urbanization,China has gone through struggles and hard works for global progress in response to environmental challenges."

Ambassador Xiaoliang said that China always stands together with Pacific island countries in their response to climate change and to promote ecological preservation. 

He said China's support was confirmed when the first China-Pacific Island Countries Foreign Ministers' Meeting was held earlier this month to strengthen commitments to the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent and blue partnership.

This would promote the full and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement and a fair and equitable system of global climate governance for win-win cooperation, Ambassador Xiaoliang added. 

"China understands the special difficulties of Pacific Island countries in tackling climate change and will set up a China-Pacific Island countries climate action cooperation center and continue to assist Pacific Island countries under the framework of South-South Cooperation." 

Ambassador Xiaoliang said that in recent years, projects such as hydropower stations, ecotype agriculture demonstration and cooperation and bio-gas in the region have been launched and financial assistance provided to the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (S.P.R.E.P).

"We are more than willing to strengthen exchanges and mutual learning with Samoa and other friends in the region to jointly safeguard the earth on which mankind depends," Ambassador Xiaoliang said.

He said that China has put in place a top-level framework for ecological and climate policies. 

China's President Xi Jinping revealed in 2020 that they aim to have CO2 emissions peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.

"The idea of ecological civilization has been written into the Chinese Constitution and embedded as one of the priorities of the overall plan for the country's development, making it a national strategy to counter climate change, realize the goals of peaking carbon emissions before 2030 and carbon neutrality before 2060," Ambassador Xiaoliang said.

He added that despite the obstacles and hardship, the nation continues to update NDC goals with great determination. 

"Nowadays, 'lucid waters and lush mountains are mountains of gold and silver' has become a national consensus," he said.

Ambassador Xiaoliang said that China has made progresses in climate and ecological governance and that in climate action, China has been accelerating work on “1+N” policies, across a number of sectors in the economy to manage the journey through peak carbon to carbon neutrality. 

He said China has met its target for 2020 ahead of schedule and made its carbon emissions intensity come down by 48.4 per cent compared to the year 2005 when non-fossil fuels accounted for 15.9 per cent of primary energy consumption. 

"We launched an emissions trading system and is building a nuclear power generating system, both the largest in the world. In ecological conservation, China has rolled out holistic approach to conserving the mountains, rivers, forests, farmlands, lakes and grasslands and become the world’s top nation for increase in forest resources for the past 10 years," he said.

"Thanks to these undertakings, 90 per cent of the types of natural terrestrial ecosystems and 71 per cent of the species on the national key list of protected wild plants and animals are under effective protection."

China is also providing powerful impetus for global efforts and is trying as much as it can to help developing countries, according to Ambassador Xiaoliang.

"As the world's largest developing country, China actively initiative green action under the Paris Agreement and [Belt and Road Initiative] framework, launching [Belt and Road Initiative] South-South Cooperation Initiative on Climate Change," he said.

"In COP26 this year, the Kunming Declaration was adopted to advance biodiversity protection and realise the 2050 vision of 'living in harmony with Nature'. 

"China has initiated to establish a Kunming Biodiversity Fund and invested 1.5 billion RMB yuan to support developing countries. We are ready to take this as an opportunity to join hands to preserve biodiversity, tackle climate change and protect the planet we call home."

Ambassador Xiaoliang added that they are working together with Samoa to improve the condition of the vessel for a safe journey. 

"Although we still have a long way to go when it comes to climate change and ecological conservation, I do believe that with all countries working together to expand common ground and build synergies for better global governance, the world will witness greater harmony between human and nature," he said.


Climate Change
By Marc Membrere 30 October 2021, 8:54PM
Samoa Observer

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