The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Working Group I report, “Climate Change 2021: The Basis of Physical Science”, which was released on August 9, is the most reliable study on the climate change and will help improve global environmental governance and encourage countries to negotiate. climate treaties.
The IPCC report is expected to top the agenda of the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference to be held in Glasgow, Scotland, in October-November.
Compared to previous IPCC reports, the latest highlights that many impacts of human activities on climate change are irreversible, indicating that the global fight against climate change must be stepped up to avoid further damage to the environment.
Natural disasters and extreme weather events such as cyclones, unusually heavy downpours, record high temperatures and uncontrollable forest fires have become more common in recent years due to climate change.
To combat climate change, the European Union, Canada, Chile, Fiji and other economies have adopted climate change policies and set specific carbon emission targets.
On September 22, 2020, while addressing the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly, President Xi Jinping said China would increase its nationally determined contributions (which according to the Paris Agreement , embody a country’s efforts to reduce its national emissions and adapt to climate change). , and take measures to ensure its peak carbon emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.
Compared to other countries, China’s interim period between peak emissions and carbon neutrality is shorter. China must therefore make strenuous efforts to achieve both goals.
China has included the two goals in national development plans and policy documents, such as the 14th five-year plan (2021-25) for national economic and social development and long-term goals until 2035; guiding opinions on the coordination and strengthening of work related to climate change and the protection of the ecological environment; and the Opinion on the Implementation of a Pilot Assessment of the Environmental Impact of Carbon Emissions of Construction Projects in Key Industries issued by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment.
In addition, some provinces have developed roadmaps and action plans to reduce emissions. For example, Zhejiang Province developed a Carbon Neutral Scientific and Technological Innovation Action Plan, Hebei Province developed a plan titled “Measures for Coordination and Strengthening of Work Related to Climate Change and Climate Change”. ecological environmental protection ”, and Chongqing Municipality emitted carbon emissions. as part of the environmental impact assessment and included it in the criteria for granting pollutant discharge authorizations.
China’s National Carbon Emissions Trading System, which officially began operations on July 16, has the potential to play a key role in achieving China’s long-term climate goals, a peak emissions before 2030 and carbon neutrality before 2060.
Under the leadership of the government, Chinese companies redouble their efforts to reduce emissions, many companies in the power generation and home appliance manufacturing sectors develop their roadmaps to achieve their respective carbon neutrality goals .
And many retail companies and other organizations have put in place incentive plans to motivate consumers to buy energy-efficient and low-carbon products to boost green consumption and encourage a low carbon lifestyle.
All this in order to help the country achieve its climate goals as soon as possible.
However, to achieve “net zero emissions”, China will need to undergo a profound economic and social transformation. And to choose the right path to carbon neutrality, China should reform key sectors such as energy, transport and construction, change the structure of production and consumption, and improve technological standards.
With regard to specific measures, the role of the economy and the rule of law should be fully played, for example by improving laws, standardization systems and government supervision, strengthening market mechanisms, including including green certificates and carbon emissions trading systems, and increasing publicity and education.
To better tackle climate change, we need the joint efforts of governments, NGOs, businesses and people around the world. However, due to their different interests, political systems and levels of technological development, many countries have not taken adequate and effective measures to tackle climate change.
As Inger Anderson, executive director of the United Nations Environment Program, said at a press conference on August 9, only 110 of the 191 signatories to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change submitted new or updated contributions determined nationally ahead of the Glasgow climate. conference.
In addition, exchanges and cooperation between countries in terms of finance, technology and human resources related to climate change must also be strengthened to boost the global fight against climate change.
Yue Xiaohua is Associate Professor at the Law Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.