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Home / Opinion / Op-Ed Contributors

China's green path an inspiration

By Khalid Taimur Akram | China Daily | Updated: 2021-09-25 09:55
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Aerial photo taken on Aug 23, 2021 shows the scenery of Saihanba forest farm in North China's Hebei province. [Photo/Xinhua]

Non-traditional security threats have become rampant in the 21st century. The severe implications of environmental and other non-traditional security challenges are associated with the non-conventional nature of the security paradigm of a country. And since no country is free of environmental risks, the focus has shifted to tackling non-traditional security threats emanating from environmental, as well as social, economic causes.

Environmental issues, especially climate change, need to be urgently addressed. With the emergence of a multipolar global order, transforming ideas and developing socioeconomic patterns, the world is witnessing big changes and countries are now more inclined toward cooperation to resolve global issues.

In the changing realm of international relations, China has been leading the global efforts to bring together countries to address common issues such as climate change. In this regard, China's policy of helping build a community with a shared future for mankind is best suited to countering the risks and working for global peace.

One of the major contours of this grand idea is to make efforts to have a clean, green and beautiful world by pursuing a low-carbon development and green model.

Under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, China acknowledges that climate change and environmental degradation are threatening the economic prosperity and well-being of nations. To neutralize that threat, China has devised an integrated policy framework to attain sustainability, by making internal structural adjustments.

And since global issues call for global cooperation and solutions, China has been deepening cooperation with, as well as helping, other countries to meet the common challenges.

The greening of China's manufacturing system is key to building a more sustainable economy. The transformation is making headway and State-supported research and development efforts have yielded exceptional results, benefiting green technological innovation. In fact, Beijing's policy for digital advancement is a model other countries could follow.

China has announced that its carbon emissions will peak before 2030 and it will realize carbon neutrality before 2060. To realize the two green goals, China has increased investments in eco-environmental sectors and is promoting green and sustainable practices. Even the COVID-19 pandemic has not affected China's green policies.

Many experts consider the environment and ecology to be integral to fostering economic growth, and the fact that China has become a global leader in renewable and clean energy shows that it is committed to championing environmental protection and preserving the ecology.

The country has made remarkable progress in energy transition over the past two decades, and its State Grid has become a global giant in ultra-high voltage electricity transmission technology, enabling swift distribution of renewable energy. China has made great progress in other green energy fields as well. Also, the government has been promoting municipal waste recycling and wildlife protection as part of its overall environmental protection program.

It is therefore clear that China's greening and sustainable development outreach will continue. In this regard, the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25) is expected to boost China's decarbonization drive, accelerate its green transformation, and help it to follow an innovation-driven, sustainable development path.

Technological advancement is also a key pillar of the 14th Five-Year Plan, and the progress China has made in the fields of alternative energy, energy conservation, smart grid, and transportation (for instance, building charging stations for electric vehicles) has been exemplary.

Given the Chinese leadership's commitment to green transformation, government departments, research institutions, high-tech giants and other big companies are expected to work for the betterment of the environment. And China's measures to reduce emissions and better protect the environment, and its decision to follow a green development path should inspire other countries to adopt similar policies to combat climate change, and realize sustainable development.

The author is executive director of the Center for Global and Strategic Studies, Islamabad. The views don't necessarily reflect those of China Daily.

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