China asks rich nations to pay for action on climate change

Ahead of a number of key meetings on climate change, China Tuesday asked developed nations to pay their committed amounts to finance efforts to combat global warming.

Beijing: Ahead of a number of key meetings on climate change, China Tuesday asked developed nations to pay their committed amounts to finance efforts to combat global warming.

Developed nations should promise to inject funds of no less than the fast-start funding between 2013 and 2015, Xie Zhenhua, China`s top climate change official and deputy head of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) told a media conference here Tuesday.

Rich nations should also chart a clear course for meeting the funding pledge of USD 100 billion by 2020, invest in the Green Climate Fund as soon as possible and ensure that developing countries get concrete funding support, Xie said.

His remarks came on the eve of the 19th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol, to be held on November 11 in the Polish capital Warsaw.

"The funding issue is the biggest concern for developing countries. It is pivotal for developing countries to implement their proposed targets for emission-cutting action and for multilateral technological transfer," state-run Xinhua news agency quoted him as saying.

Apart from the funding issue, he said the Warsaw meet should be an opportunity for all parties in the second commitment period of the protocol to ratify the Amendment to the second commitment of the protocol as soon as possible, and to set a higher emission-cutting target in line with the agreement reached at the Doha Conference.

According to the principle of comparability, developed countries who have not signed up to the second commitment period of the protocol, or who have withdrawn from or have not ratified the protocol should also raise their levels of emission cuts before 2020, Xie noted.

"Developed countries must meet their emission cut, funding and technology transfer pledges from previous conferences and scale up efforts with action before 2020," he said.

"This is the foundation for maintaining mutual trust among all parties and also the precondition and guarantee for progress made at the Durban Conference negotiations," he said.

About China`s own commitments, Xie said Chinese government issued a white paper on its policies and measures for addressing climate change.

The white paper said, from a domestic perspective, Chinese people`s awareness of low-carbon development has increased while in 2012, CO2 emissions per unit of GDP fell 5.02 per cent compared to 2011. By the end of 2012, China`s energy saving and environmental protection industry was worth over USD 440 billion.

China is the largest producer of emissions in the world.

Pollution is becoming a major source of public anger in China, and authorities have vowed to cut levels of atmospheric pollutants in Beijing and other major cities by as much as 25 per cent by 2017 in an effort to improve their poor air quality.

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