The Environment Minister of China, Huang Runqiu, expressed on Thursday that his country is interested in enhancing collaboration with the United States in the fight against climate change. He made this statement during a meeting with California Governor Gavin Newsom in Beijing.
Governor Newsom is currently on a seven-day visit to China to promote collaboration on climate issues. This trip, which was previously seen as a normal occurrence for a governor, is now gaining more interest due to the recent escalation of tensions between the United States and China.
The cooperation on climate change is a rare area of agreement between the United States and China. Tensions between the two nations have worsened in recent times due to disagreements over trade policies, tariffs, human rights violations, and the status of Taiwan, a self-governed island that China considers to be its own.
On Thursday, Huang stated that his ministry will uphold the commitments outlined in the memorandum of understanding signed between China and California last year. These commitments include investing in carbon markets, implementing climate adaptation measures, enforcing environmental laws, and promoting human-to-human exchanges. This cooperation aims to positively impact environmental collaboration between China and the US.
According to Newsom’s opening statements on Thursday, California has taken a leading role in regulating air pollution and addressing other climate-related concerns.
“We acknowledge the limitations of leadership at a subnational level. We require additional partners. I am present with a mindset of collaboration and humbleness, acknowledging that we do not possess all the solutions,” stated the governor of California.
Both parties discussed an increase in severe weather events within their respective nations.
The statement from California and China on Wednesday stated their commitment to collaborate in addressing climate change. This includes efforts in offshore wind, advanced energy storage technologies, and zero-emission vehicles.
Newsom was greeted in Beijing with a warmth and friendliness rarely seen between U.S. and Chinese officials. On Wednesday, he met with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, as well as other senior leaders including top diplomat Wang Yi and Vice President Han Zheng.
Governor Newsom has emphasized the importance of collaboration between both parties in addressing climate issues, recognizing its impact on the well-being and future of humanity.
The governors of California, whose economy surpasses that of many nations, have a extensive record of working with China on climate-related issues. Both Democrat Jerry Brown and Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger have visited the country to exchange information on decreasing air pollution and emissions. In 2017, Brown also had a meeting with Xi Jinping.
This report was contributed to by Olivia Zhang, a video producer from Beijing, for the Associated Press.