A high-level meeting on energy and climate action between the European Commission and the Chinese Government took place on 20 September 2017 in Brussels in the framework of the EU-China Strategic Partnership as well as within the EU-China Low Carbon City partnership launched 2016. On the agenda were issues relating to the Covenant of Mayors and its global dimension, including support to cities on their climate change mitigation and adaptation measures as well as on access to clean energy. Cooperation within the upcoming COP23 was also discussed.
The EU Commission was represented by the Deputy Director General of DG ENER Christopher Jones as well as by Director Artur Runge-Metzger of DG CLIMA. China was represented by Mr Xie Ji, Director General of the Climate Change Department at NDRC. The European Union representatives explained the main elements of the Covenant of Mayors as a bottom-up initiative in which Mayors commit to concrete climate action even beyond the national and EU targets.
Mr Xie explained to the EU Commission representatives existing support measures by the Chinese Government to the cities as well as achievements (best practices) made by Chinese cities in areas like clean energy production. For example, the Chinese province of Qinghai covers 100% of its energy demand with renewable energy sources. Mr Xie also referred to combined solar energy and fish production (fishing pools) several Chinese provinces, including Zhejiang (Hangzhou).
Both sides agreed to develop a roadmap for EU-China cooperation on low carbon development, to further strengthen city-to-city cooperation between European and Chinese cities and to coordinate within the COP23.
Talks were supported by a delegation of seven Chinese energy policy and climate change action experts, who are starting a one-week mission to the EU. The mission – which is supported by the IUC programme of EU’s Foreign Policy Instrument (FPI) - aims at providing Chinese representatives with practical and technical training regarding the EU’s approach towards low carbon urban development, focusing on the EU Covenant of Mayors (now Global Covenant). The visit includes policy results (e.g. institutional setting and processes of the Covenant), methodological aspects developed by the JRC and practical implementation in cities of Belgium (Ghent), Portugal (Lisbon and Almada) and Austria (Vienna). EU cities have been chosen based on their track record on climate change mitigation and adaptation measures as well as on their experience on access to clean energy within the EU Covenant of Mayors.
- 28 September 2017
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