Participating countries of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) are expected to enhance marine ecosystem protection and accelerate the development of a maritime community with shared future, officials and experts said at a recent forum.
The Symposium on Maritime Community with Shared Future and Green Development in the Context of Carbon Neutrality & Inception Meeting for Study on the Green Development of BRI Maritime Connectivity was held in Beijing on July 9.
Under the theme of green and low-carbon development of the Maritime Silk Road, the forum discussed the opportunities and challenges of marine ecological and environmental protection and the sustainable utilization of marine resources, and also explored the roadmap for green development of maritime connectivity under the BRI in the context of carbon neutrality.
Focusing on key areas such as green ports and green shipping, representatives attending the meeting exchanged ideas on topics including pollution prevention and control in ports, shipping emission reductions and BRI cooperation on the sustainable development of oceans.
Countries along the Maritime Silk Road could strengthen cooperation in green ports, carbon reduction in the shipping industry, maritime biodiversity conservation and sustainable fishing, Erik Solheim, convener of the Advisory Committee of the BRI International Green Development Coalition (BRIGC), told the forum.
Since the establishment of the Thematic Partnership on Maritime Community with Shared Future and Maritime Environmental Governance, BRIGC has been actively promoting policy communication on green and low-carbon development in ocean-related areas, said Zhou Guomei, director general of the Foreign Environmental Cooperation Center of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, noting that China-ASEAN cooperation in addressing climate change and protecting mangroves has delivered positive outcomes.
The Study on Green Development of BRI Maritime Connectivity was also officially launched at the meeting. It is the first research project relating to the sustainable development of oceans released by BRIGC.
The study will comprehensively analyze the current situation and potential of countries along the BRI routes in the green and low-carbon development of ports and shipping, introduce Chinese and international best practices in the development of green ports and green shipping, and propose policy recommendations for promoting the green and low-carbon development of BRI maritime connectivity.
China has experience and good practices that could be replicated in countries along the BRI routes in the development and operation of green ports. Supporting the development of green ports in BRI participating countries is of great significance to promoting the green recovery of the global economy and realizing the goals proposed by the Paris Agreement, Li Kaiming, deputy director general of the South China Institute of Environmental Science of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said at the event.