Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao
China has called upon rich nations to abandon their “unsustainable lifestyle” to fight climate change and expand help to poor nations bearing the brunt of worsening droughts and rising sea levels. (Reuters)
This year, China surpassed the U.S to become the largest emitter of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas from industry, power plants and vehicles lifting global temperatures.
Unlike other developing nations (such as India and Brazil) China has not taken an active role in the discussions against global warming.Even now it is against binding caps on its emissions. However Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has announced that China will look to curbing pollution if developed countries commit to clean energy technology transfers and funding.
China is promoting a plan to dramatically boost the flow of greenhouse gas-cutting technology from wealthy economies to developing countries. According to Zou Ji, a professor at Renmin University in Beijing involved in shaping this plan, China proposes that developed countries devote a percentage of their GDP to the technology transfer fund and to other global warming initiatives in developing countries. This would result in a total of $284 billion a year if members of the Organization for Cooperation and Economic Development (OECD) paid up based on the size of their economies in 2007.
Premier Wen says that the global financial crisis should not distract the international community from fighting global warming. China’s economic interests definitely appear to be tied to protecting the environment. The Xinhua News Agency has just announced a massive domestic economic stimulus package worth 4 trillion yuan ($586 billion) through 2010. Investment will be made in infrastructure, social welfare and environmental protection.
Image Credit: Reuters