NAIROBI — China’s ongoing annual Two Sessions are enriching the global debate on how to accelerate green, sustainable and inclusive growth, said a senior UN official.
At this year’s sessions of the National People’s Congress (NPC) and the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), respectively China’s top legislature and political advisory body, fresh impetus is being added to the country’s green development.
In the Government Work Report delivered at the opening of the annual NPC session on March 5, China pledges to make big advances in green development in 2019 and pursue both high-quality development and environmental protection.
Joyce Msuya, acting executive director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), said she is optimistic that China will sustain the political goodwill required to tackle environmental challenges like pollution.
“If you look at China’s history in addressing for example the PM2.5, the pollution problem, it took leadership in its own very pragmatic ways and made some progress,” said Msuya.
The fight against pollution is one of the “three tough battles” China has vowed to win in order to complete the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020.
Msuya, who once served as the World Bank Institute’s East Asia and Pacific Regional Coordinator in China, hailed China’s success in shifting toward renewable energy sources and fighting air and water pollution.
The UN official spoke highly of the Chinese government’s decision to reduce the production and use of nitrogen dioxide and synthetic fertilizers in the agricultural sector, saying it will help prevent the pollution of water bodies.
With an eye to the upcoming fourth session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-4), Msuya said she looks forward to a re-invigorated partnership with China to help address such pressing challenges as climate change, biodiversity loss and waste.
More than 2,000 delegates, including environmental officials, industry executives, scholars and campaigners, are expected to attend the five-day meeting in Nairobi in the coming week to revitalize the global green agenda.
China’s pursuit of green development, said the UN official, can inspire other developing countries to follow suit.
“We continue to engage and look forward to learning from what China will do in both pollution, biodiversity but also waste management and chemical use,” she added.