(2015-12-13)The Paris climate change conference, which started at the end of November and was extended by one day to Saturday, is the latest attempt by world leaders to achieve a legally binding treaty on emissions cuts after the talks in Copenhagen in 2009 failed to deliver a deal.
The following are remarks made by Xie Zhenhua, China's special representative on climate change, who expounded China's efforts, promises and plans to meet the global climate challenge.
On Nov. 19, Xie released a report on China's efforts to cope with climate change at a press conference, saying China hopes that "a powerful, ambitious and legally binding deal" can be reached at the Paris climate change conference.
A 2015 deal should reflect the principles of "common but differentiated responsibilities" (CDR) and "respective capabilities", Xie added.
Xie also said developed nations still have much to provide money and transfer low-carbon and environmentally friendly technologies to developing countries.
"Each country should deliver what they have promised, which is the basic foundation of political trust," said Xie, adding that mutual trust is a prerequisite to a successful conference.
Xie introduced some of China's initiatives to curb greenhouse gases such as a nationwide carbon emissions trading market to be launched in 2017.
Xie also revealed that all CO2 reduction targets set in China's 12th Five Year Plan for 2011-2015, including non-fossil fuel consumption and forest growing stock, have been achieved.
Xie stressed that China will ensure the accomplishment of the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) targets in whatever circumstances.
"The Chinese government and the Chinese people will abide by our promises," said Xie.
On Dec. 1, a seminar, titled "Desertification and Climate Change in China: The Kubuqi Model of Ecological Capital", was held on the sidelines of the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP) of the United Nations Framework for Climate Change Convention (COP21) to share China's experience of transforming Kubuqi Desert in north China into an oasis boasting immense business opportunities.
On the occasion, Xie said the story of Kubuqi exemplifies a win-win solution that combines tackling climate issues and improving people's livelihood, and provides valuable experience to other developing countries.
On Dec. 2, Xie said at the COP21 that China's climate commitments are "specific, powerful, and pragmatic."
Xie said China's INDCs differ from other countries in that the Chinese document is very complete and includes "mitigation and adaptation strategies and policies as well as specific measures, even several operational and specific projects."
On Dec. 3, Xie told reporters at the COP21 that China vows to continue to play a constructive role in the Paris climate talks, reiterating that China backs a "comprehensive, balanced and strong" agreement on curbing climate change at the COP21.
"Developed countries have the obligation to provide financial support, but what China has done is voluntary," said Xie.
"Despite the slow negotiation process and existing divergences, China will continue to play a constructive and positive role in Paris climate talks."
On Dec. 4, Xie praised the contributions made by local governments, cities and enterprises to overfulfilling China's national targets in combating climate change.
He said that since 2010, China has identified six low-carbon pilot provinces and 36 low-carbon pilot cities, tasking them to develop their own low-carbon roadmap based on their specific situation.
On Dec. 5, attending a side event organized by the European Union (EU) with EU Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete, Xie said China is going to strengthen cooperation with the EU to build the carbon market, with an aim to launch a nationwide carbon emission trading market in 2017.
"We are striving to contribute to the success of the conference, to reach a comprehensive, balanced, legally binding agreement which is applicable to all," Xie said.
On Dec. 11, Xie said the Chinese delegation to the Paris climate talks was busy communicating with parties concerned to strive for a comprehensive, balanced, powerful, ambitious and legally binding climate agreement.
Representatives from all the parties have shown flexibility and conducted substantive discussions about some important issues in the text during the negotiation running from later Thursday to earlier Friday, he said.
He predicted that the new version of the Paris climate agreement that is scheduled to be released by the COP president on Saturday will be "quite close" to the final agreement, and the brackets that represent disagreements of the parties would be dramatically decreased.
The Chinese delegation will urge all the parties to make joint efforts towards a final agreement with full constructiveness, flexibility and impetus, to ensure that the conference reach a comprehensive, balanced, powerful, legally binding agreement that applies to all the parties, said Xie.