Belt and Road

08 Nov 2021

China's Green BRI Contributes to Tackling Climate Change: British Expert

08 Nov 2021  by   
China's green action initiatives that encourage green infrastructure, energy, transportation and finance under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) framework will contribute to the global fight against climate change, a British expert has said.

"It is really important that the world powers not only change their policies domestically, but they all engage internationally, and this need to be green as well. We start to see this happening," Antony Froggatt, deputy director of Environment and Society Programme Chatham House, a London-based think tank, told Xinhua.

The expert lauded China's decision not to build any more coal-fired power stations overseas.

"That is an absolutely clear example of where countries working together to develop clean energy resources," Froggatt said in Glasgow, Scotland, where the 26th United Nations Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP26) is going on.

In 2020, 57 percent of China's investment in BRI partner countries went to renewable energy projects, up from 38 percent in 2019.

As the world's largest developing country that has yet to finalize industrialization, China has announced that it will strive to peak carbon emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060, a move which Froggatt said "surprised many but welcomed by everyone."

The expert hailed China's efforts to develop green technology while building infrastructure and lifting about 100 million people out of extreme poverty over the past nine years.

"It is absolutely clear that china has done an amazing job in terms of lifting a huge percent of population out of poverty," he said. "It has built large amounts of infrastructure."

"When we look across all sectors, when we talk about technologies, who is building the most technologies, virtually in all cases it is China, domestically and in terms of its construction for exports, like wind power, like solar power... China with its growing market, is building more than anyone else."

China has become the world's largest market for renewable energy, with renewable power accounting for 29.5 percent of overall electricity consumption, according to official statistics.

The country is also the world's biggest manufacturer of renewable energy equipment, ranking first in installed capacity of hydroelectric, wind and solar power generation, and has the largest nuclear power generating projects under construction.

Meanwhile, Froggatt said it is "a fundamental problem and to some degree a shame" that the developed countries have failed to deliver their promise of 100 billion U.S. dollars a year to help lower-income nations by 2020, among other pledges, to tackle climate change.

"It shouldn't be that difficult," he said.

The expert urged the world, especially the European Union, China and the United States, to work together for real progress in tackling climate change.

The cooperation of the three parties is "essential" to cut costs of renewable energy like solar energy and wind power, which enables other countries to access these technologies, he said. 

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