Washington University Students for International Collaboration on the Environment

China’s key-word around year 2010: Low-Carbon

If you walk by the streets of any big city in China lately,  “low-carbon” might probably be the word you will hear most often. It wouldn’t be surprising, since the government has been putting a lot of emphasis throughout this year, promoting this theme of “Low carbon, New energy and Sustainable development” in the country.

So, here is what I found, one of the official announcement from nation’s Xinhua News Agency, publishing information on China’s strategy towards low-carbon emission.

“China needs more reasonable carbon emission quotas to buoy the nation’s fast economic development amid the progressing industrialization and urbanization, said an official with the nation’s top economic planner Sunday.

Economic development is still a priority for China as it has to enable the 1.3 billion people to live decent lives, Su Wei, director of the climate change department of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), said at the International Cooperative Conference on Green Economy and Climate Change.

The “high carbon” characteristic rooted in Chins’s energy structure would not be fundamentally changed in a short term as the development and use of clean energy such as wind and solar power started late in China, he said.

Unreasonable industrial structure and relatively backward industry technology also made China’s carbon emission reduction drive difficult , said Su.

But he also said China has stepped up efforts to curb carbon emission since it vowed in last November to reduce the intensity of carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP in 2020 by 40 to 45 percent compared with 2005 levels.

Besides setting up an accountability system for energy conservation and emission reduction, and investing more in new energy industries, China has been improving policies related to low carbon development, accelerating research on low carbon and environmental friendly technologies, and expanding international cooperation to contain emissions in some key sectors, according to Su.

With a theme of “Low carbon, New energy and Sustainable development,” the conference was organized by the China Center for International Economic Exchanges.

The conference has invited top leaders, environment officials and entrepreneurs from both China and countries including Brazil, India, Mexico and South Africa.”

(Scanning the original text in the article, please click here)

Well, a little bit outdated, but quite important. I bet you can find a lot more, just google the key word: low-carbon, China.

So, nowadays, even advertisement would more than happy to quote  the word “low-carbon” to attract attention, not to say common citizens who regard every single movements including taking buses for work/riding bikes to school/avoid using plastic bags/using renewable paper as “low-carbon” lifestyle, so on and so forth.

And yeah, people pretty much like to label it with this popular name as low-carbon recently, which I think, is not a bad idea in terms of cultivating people’s responsibility towards keeping a more friendly environment. It takes time to educate a whole generation to eliminate all their bad habits, especially in overwhelmingly big-sized China, but a gradually-proceeding elevation might not be inconceivable. This first step of “low-carbon”, I believe, is just a successful step forward.

-Cathy (Fudan Delegate)

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