China & Pacific Is. climate justice ideals


Climate experts, officials from China, Pacific Island states call for justice, cooperation at post-COP28 era

Experts and government officials from China and the Pacific Island Countries (PICs) shared their research and commitments via a recent forum, bolstering cooperation in the pursuit of climate justice and equitable solutions to the pressing challenges of climate change in the wake of the recently concluded COP28 in Dubai, UAE, where the first global stocktake took place and the Loss and Damage Fund was established.

The “2023 Pacific Island Countries Climate Action Dialogue” was held in Liaocheng, East China’s Shandong Province on December 15. Hosted by the China-Pacific Island Countries Climate Action Cooperation Center, the dialogue focused on challenges of and actions to address climate change in the Pacific island countries, shared progress of China’s South-South cooperation in the context of the Belt and Road Initiative and explored future pathways to jointly promote regional climate cooperation by China and the Pacific island countries.

More than 120 participates, including scholars from the National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation, National Climate Centre, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ocean University of China, Fudan University, Sun Yat-sen University, National University of Samoa, Liaocheng University, and guests from Fiji, Kiribati, Micronesia, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Sri Lanka attended the dialogue.

This dialogue effectively promoted exchanges between China and the island countries in the field of climate change, with a deep understanding on impacts of climate change on Pacific island countries. The dialogue also explored the potential of climate cooperation between China and Pacific island countries, according to a statement sent to the Global Times by China-Pacific Island Countries Climate Action Cooperation Center on Wednesday.

Li Yan, Deputy Director of Department of International Cooperation, the National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation, shared China’s policies and achievements in addressing climate change, pointing out that compared to 2005, China had reduced its carbon emission per unit of GDP by 50 percent, reduced its proportion of coal consumption on energy consumption from 72.4 percent to 56.2 percent, and realized 1.2 billion kilowatt-hours installed capacity of renewable energy power generation from wind, solar, water and biomass, a remarkable achievement in low-carbon development.

Eric Salut, Special Representative of the Director General of the Bureau of Climate Change and Development of Papua New Guinea and Chairman of the organizing committee of the National Climate Summit, pointed out that China’s technological, financial and capacity-building support essential collective efforts in building a resilient future for the Pacific. China’s dedication to sustainable development and climate action has been evident through various initiatives, partnerships with island countries. The Belt and Road Initiative, in particular, expresses China’s vision for fostering global cooperation and resilience, he said.

Li Jianping, Director of the Research Center for Marine Carbon Neutralization at Ocean University of China, voiced that climate change has had a profoundly significant impact on agriculture, fisheries and food systems in the PICs. He emphasized the necessity to intensify climate actions to aid these nations in combating climate change and achieving sustainable development.

During the dialogue, Chinese experts mentioned that China could leverage its technological and human resource strengths to assist the PICs. For instance, adapting to local conditions, China could develop a series of intelligent small-scale photovoltaic systems for seawater/brackish water desalination to meet the water and electricity needs of the island countries.

Shen Lei, a research fellow from the Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, proposed that there should also be collaborative research on the relationship between cultural heritage resources and climate change with the PICs, utilizing the roles of the National Museum of China and international organizations.

Source: Global Times, Dec 20, 2023.