The European Union (EU) and China have signed an agreement promising to work together on reducing China’s greenhouse gas emissions and moving toward a low-carbon economy.
European Commissioner for Development, Andris Piebalgs, and Chinese Minister of Commerce, Chen Deming, signed a financial agreement in Brussels last week that will see the EU will contribute some €25 million to support pilot projects promoting a low-carbon, green economy.
Over four years, the deal will support three specific projects focusing on water, waste and heavy metal pollution, the establishment of an emissions trading system in China and sustainable urbanisation.
The EU will also help China through the provision of technical assistance, training and sharing best practice experiences.
“[The] agreement with China is a concrete example of how we can work in partnership to tackle global and shared challenges. We commend China’s commitments and we’ll support their efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; to make cities cleaner and to better manage water, waste and heavy metal pollution,” commented Piebalgs.
Climate Action Commissioner, Connie Hedegaard adds that the move is “an important step” towards closer co-operation on an international carbon market.
“Our joint commitment to carbon markets shows the potential and benefits of smart climate policies. This is a huge opportunity to modernise our economies, stimulate growth and create jobs in new dynamic industries with innovative technologies and clean energy,” she added.
Despite the agreement, the EU and China have had a difficult relationship in recent times with the EC investigating potentially unfair solar panel exports from China and China refusing to allow its airlines to participate in the EU’s Emissions Trading System.
For further information:
UK to help China tackle climate change (18-Sept)
EC to investigate unfair solar panel exports from China (7-Sept)
Chinese per capita emissions now equal the EU (19-Jul)
China and US take action to stop airlines’ participation in EU ETS (6-Feb)
25 September 2012