China offers solutions to climate change


Rather than demonizing China, the West would do well to emulate some of the country’s environmental policies

The Earth’s greenhouse-gas (GHG) concentrations are driving catastrophic climate change, and creating an existential threat to the planet. But there is a way out.

Last year, President Xi Jinping pledged that China’s carbon-dioxide emissions would peak before 2030, and that the country would become carbon-neutral before 2060.  

China has a history of setting ambitious, nearly impossible goals and then achieving them –often before deadline – so this pledge is significant. 

Under the Communist Party of China (CPC), Beijing has already created an “economic miracle” in transforming China into the largest economy in the world. It ended extreme poverty while creating the largest middle class in the world. 

It has virtually eradicated Covid-19 through non-pharmaceutical methods, while vaccinating up to 20 million people daily, and pledging the largest number of vaccines (2.2 billion) and distributing more than a billion to the rest of the world. 

It has also been applying similar focus and national resolve to tackle climate change.

China has the greatest program of adopting renewable energy of any country. It generates more renewable power than North, Central and South America – 42 countries – combined.  It has more solar parks and wind farms than any other country. Last year it established more wind power than the rest of the world combined

It has more electric vehicles than any other country: it operates 420,000 electric buses, 99% of the world’s total; Shenzhen alone has 16,000 e-buses and 22,000 e-taxis. It aims to have 325 million electric vehicles operating by 2050. 

Its high-speed rail network spanning 38,000 kilometers is so extensive and effective that air travel is starting to become obsolete.  No country has as dense, large, and efficient system of clean public transportation and high-speed rail as China. 

In addition, China has the greatest carbon-sequestration afforestation program in the world, creating forests the size of Belgium every year. It has doubled its forest coverage to 23% over the past 40 years. Satellite analysis over the past 20 years by the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Ames Research Lab proves that China has contributed more to greening the planet than any other country in the world.

In other words, by almost every sustainability index, China a world leader – far ahead of the US, for example – and is pioneering a way forward for the planet. It will likely hit its targets ahead of time.  



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