Huang Runqiu, Chinese Executive Vice Chair of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development (CCICED), chaired the Closing Plenary Session of CCICED’s 2022 Annual General Meeting (AGM).
Achim Steiner, CCICED Vice Chair and UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator, congratulated the Council on its historic contributions and on the AGM’s substantive discussions on the increasing challenges of building an ecological civilization.
Inger Andersen, CCICED Vice Chair and UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director, highlighted Chinese leadership on: carbon peaking and neutrality, renewable energy, energy efficiency, greening of the BRI, circular economy, digitization, and financial systems for investment in healthy ecosystems.
Kristin Halvorsen, CCICED Vice Chair and CICERO Center for International Climate Research Director, called the AGM’s sessions inspiring and stressed the need for directing finance away from activities that destroy nature and ecosystems.
Liu Shijin, CCICED Chinese Chief Advisor, noted AGM participants reached consensus on the need to balance growth and security with long-term sustainable development and on the importance of prioritizing green investments. He stressed the need to: stabilize existing energy production while developing new installed capacity, disaggregate national targets for different cities and regions, and lay a solid foundation for future development by ensuring digital and green transitions are promoted at the same time.
Building on the AGM’s rich body of research, discussion and recommendations, Scott Vaughan, CCICED International Chief Advisor, flagged the opportunity for China to adopt a new national climate law that could firmly underpin the strategies already in place and facilitate enforcement. Noting that successful laws evolve from enforcement and deterrence to become embraced as common sense, he explained such a law would also broaden public awareness of how green lifestyles throughout society can contribute to advancing a low-carbon ecological civilization.
Børge Brende, President of the World Economic Forum (WEF), said the Council has established itself not only as a leading champion of sustainable development but as a vital resource for forward-leaning policy guidance, and encouraged other countries to learn from the Council’s model.
Peter Bakker, President and CEO of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), congratulated CCICED on the launch of Phase VII, and committed to continued engagement in the Council’s work, flagging the crucial role of business in realizing an inclusive, green and low-carbon world.
Juergen Voegele, Vice President of Sustainable Development, World Bank, highlighted the need for urgent action on climate change despite global instability. He said there are many reasons for China to act early on climate change and sustainability, including to increase energy security and develop technology increasingly in demand. He flagged the need for China to continue to make structural reforms and noted that a climate law would be a critical next step.
Francesco La Camera, Director General of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), said ongoing crises make clear the need to abandon old, centralized energy systems based on fossil fuels, noting that electrification and efficiency are key drivers for accelerating the energy transition.
Han Zheng, Vice Premier of China and CCICED Chair, thanked the Council for its three decades of support for China’s sustainable development and for the AGM’s recommendations, saying a green and low-carbon economy is essential for China’s high-quality development. He asked CCICED to continue building on the Chinese tradition of joint dialogue, inviting participants to visit China, when the pandemic subsides, to understand the environment and development situation in its different regions and provide more targeted advice. He said China must balance a clean energy transition with secure energy supply by building new renewable energy capacity before eliminating coal power production, underscoring the need to double renewable energy production in five years. He concluded by noting that CCICED’s expert in-depth discussions and suggestions had inspired him to hope for a green and beautiful world.
IISD's Summary: The summary report for this meeting will be available on this page on Friday, 1 July 2022.
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