China and EU prepare for Paris 2015

26 Apr 2014

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A panel discussion hosted by the United Nations Theme Group on Climate Change and Environment (UNTGCCE) was held at the UN Compound in Beijing on 25 April 2014, with Connie Hedegaard, European Union Climate Action Commissioner, among the distinguished guests. The event was organized by the China Carbon Forum in cooperation with the EU Delegation to China under the auspices of the UNTGCCE. It discusses the climate change mitigation progress of China and the EU individually and collectively, and their respective actions to ensure a successful outcome at the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to be held in Paris in 2015.

Mr. Zhang Shigang, UNEP Country Coordinator and Co-Chair of the UNTGCCE, gave opening remarks. Dr. Yang Fuqiang, Senior Advisor from the Natural Resources Defense Council, and Ms. Sylvie Bermann, French Ambassador to China, joined Ms. Hedegaard during panel discussions. Ms. Emily Chew, Vice Chair of the China Carbon Forum, moderated the discussion.

Setting up a strong and binding global agreement in Paris to avoid dangerous climate change consequences is of utmost urgency and a key issue discussed during the event. It was emphasized that while countries should have differentiated contributions to global mitigation efforts under the expected universal agreement, it is important that all countries are legally bound by it. It was also noted that the private sector should play a key role in contributing to the pledges that developed countries made in COP15 and COP16 regarding channeling $100 billion annually to aid developing countries by 2020.

The event was attended by nearly 100 participants from the diplomatic community, civil society, academia, and the private sector.