WASHINGTON — The United States and China will convene a climate-smart and low-carbon cities summit in the US west coast city of Los Angeles in September, Xie Zhenhua, China’s special representative for climate change, said in Washington on June 23.
“It shows not only the central government, but local governments, including cities and enterprises, are invited to get actively involved in the efforts to combat climate change,” Xie told a press briefing on the first day of the two-day seventh China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington.
The veteran climate negotiator revealed that both countries have specified 13 priority areas for cooperation, eight of which have already launched more than 30 projects.
“All these projects have made positive progress,” he said.
During the ongoing meeting, both sides have agreed to start cooperation on the remaining five priority areas, including shale gas, nuclear energy, clean energy, carbon capture, utilization and storage, as well as green trade.
As the largest developing country and the largest developed country respectively, China and the US have set “a good example” for the world when it comes to fighting climate change, Xie said, adding “It shows the South and the North can cooperate, and this cooperation can be win-win.”
Xie also revealed that China will submit its post-2020 climate action plan, called the Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC), to the UN by the end of the month.
“We will announce a series of objectives to address climate change by 2030. We will also cover a lot of policies, measures and projects to reach these objectives,” he said, implying that China’ s announcements will be “ambitious”.
For example, in order to achieve the objectives set by the INDC by 2030, it is estimated that a total investment of 41 trillion Chinese renminbi (about $6.72 trillion) is needed to improve energy efficiency and develop renewable energy, Xie noted.
So far, a total of 41 countries have submitted or announced their INDCs in line with their respective national conditions. But Japan and the European Union’s proposals have been criticized as inadequate.
The seventh China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue opened in Washington on June 23, with climate change high on the agenda of the two-day event.