Center for American Progress

RELEASE: Beijing’s Growing Appetite for Climate Action
Press Release

RELEASE: Beijing’s Growing Appetite for Climate Action

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senior Policy Analyst at the Center for American Progress, Julian Wong, released a column about the momentum growing in China toward a clean energy economy, and China’s acknowledgement of the need to peak carbon emissions. Mr. Wong is available for comment.

Read full column Peaking Duck: Beijing’s Growing Appetite for Climate Action here.

“…today, the Climate Group has launched a report entitled “China’s Clean Revolution II: Opportunities for a Low Carbon Future” that provides a similarly compelling narrative of how China, despite the current global economic downturn, is making hefty investments to accelerate a tectonic shift from grey to green in sectors such as transportation, industrial energy efficiency, wind, solar, geothermal, and urban design. The transition won’t be easy, nor will it happen overnight, but there should be little doubt about the Chinese leadership’s intent and resolve to reorient its carbon-intensive economy toward a more sustainable path.” writes Julian Wong, a Senior Policy Analyst with the Energy Opportunity Team at the Center for American Progress.

The report from the Climate Group examines four sectors of China’s low carbon economy:

• Thirteen Chinese cities have signed up to a government scheme to purchase 13,000 electric vehicles (EVs) this year in total. The aim is to manufacture half a million EVs in China in 2011;

• The energy intensity of the Chinese economy has fallen by over 60% since 1980, and the government has set a goal of reducing it by a further 20% between 2005 and 2010;

• Internationally, mainland China supplies 30% of the world’s solar PV technology (or 40% including Taiwan); domestically, China is the largest wind power generator in Asia and fourth in the world;

• China’s energy conservation goals include a 50% energy conservation standard for all new buildings and a 65% standard for new buildings in some major cities by 2010.

Now all eyes are focused on the United States and China—the two biggest greenhouse gas emitters—with just four months to go to the U.N. summit on climate change in Copenhagen, where nations will negotiate a successor treaty to the Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012. Attendees at the most recent round of U.N. climate talks in Bonn, Germany may have left the meetings with a pessimistic sense that we’re a long way off from a global agreement. But interesting developments are unfolding in China outside of these U.N. meetings that bring a more hopeful message…”

Read full column Peaking Duck: Beijing’s Growing Appetite for Climate Action here.

Read Julian Wong’s biography here.

Read Julian Wong’s testimony “Ensuring and Enhancing U.S. Competitiveness While Moving Toward a Clean-Energy Economy” before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.

To speak with Julian Wong, please contact Suzi Emmerling at [email protected] or 202-481-8224.