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Chinese govt, companies take action to control emissions

Updated: Jul 23,2015 2:18 PM

The sight of grey hazy skies, polluted rivers and huge industrial plants, has dominated the narrative about industrial pollution in China. In recent years, the government has taken steps to change that. And at the China Summit on Caring for Climate, people are talking about how exactly to turn things around.

Hundreds of egrets just meters away from a Px plant. This is the scene at the site of the Zhenhai Refining and Chemical Company, or ZRCC.

Owned and operated by Sinopec in Zhejiang province, the plant is a living testament to how the environment and industry can actually thrive together.

Despite this, China, the world’s second largest economy, remains its biggest carbon emitter, producing about a quarter of the world’s green house gases last year.

Here, in Beijing at the annual China Summit on Caring for the Climate, discussion is centered around how this can change.

A major announcement ahead of talks late this year in Paris to seek a new global deal on climate change.

Companies are already taking decisive action. Many are shifting from their dependance on coal to renewable energy sources.

According to international estimates, China spent 90 billion US dollars in renewables generating capacity in 2014 - as much as the United States and Europe put together.

Already these efforts are gaining traction. According to latest government data, China’s CO2 emissions fell by 2 percent in 2014 compared with the previous year, the first drop in more than a decade.

Experts here at the summit are calling this an encouraging sign that countries around the world can and will work together to combat climate change.