Photo taken on Nov. 15, 2017 shows the pavilion of China in "Bonn Zone" of UN climate talks in Bonn, Germany. Events, exhibitions and presentations of countries and UN organizations attending the UN climate talks are held here aimed to raise the awareness of the climate change across the world. (Xinhua/Shan Yuqi)
The UN climate talks in Bonn is scheduled to conclude on Friday. As the world once again focused on climate change, China, as the largest developing country, also attracted worldwide attention for how it acted.
Through statements made in official speeches, active participation in the Bonn talks, and various side events the country organized to exchange ideas and practices, China has reasserted itself a responsible player in global battle against climate change at the 23rd Conference of Parties (COP23) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
China's special representative on climate change affairs Xie Zhenhua stated at an event of the COP 23, that as a responsible developing country, China conscientiously takes on its international obligations that match both its development stage and actual capacity, and implements the Paris Agreement with concrete action.
OVER DELIVERED ON CLIMATE TARGETS
In terms of domestic efforts, "China has over delivered on achieving its targets in fighting climate change, and reversed the rapid rise of CO2 emission that had lasted for years," Xie stated while addressing a high-level meeting of COP 23.
From 2005 to 2015, China's economy had grown by 1.48 times, and at the same time the carbon intensity, the measure of CO2 emission per unit of GDP, had dropped by 38.6 percent, Xie said, adding the country had avoided emitting 4.1 billion tonnes of CO2.
Moreover, the share of coal in the total consumption of energy had decreased from 72 percent to 64 percent in the 2005-2015 time frame, while the share of non-fossil fuels in primary energy consumption rose from 7.4 percent to 12 percent, and at the same time, the country's forest reserve had expanded by 3 billion cubic meters, according to Xie.
"This year, we will jumpstart the nation-wide carbon-trading market," Xie said during his speech.
China's domestic climate actions have been widely recognized in the international community.
Barbara Hendricks, German environment minister, told Xinhua that she is aware that China planned to build far fewer thermal power plants than five years ago, and to generate more and more power from renewable energy, which means China is on a good path of development.
Dylan Murray, policy advisor with the Nature Conservancy, told Xinhua "China is taking real steps to peak emissions".
In the future, China's economy will further decouple with fossil fuels, and tougher controls on the efficiency, or even on the total consumption of coal are foreseeable, estimated Liu Qiang, director of Strategy and Planning Department of the National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation.
GUARDIAN OF MULTILATERAL PROCESSES
Globally, China has promised to peak its CO2 emission by around 2030, and made crucial contributions to the signing of the Paris Agreement that seeks to limit a rise in temperatures to "well below" 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times.