The Chinese National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (NCSC) and the German Environmental Agency (UBA) co-hosted “Green Transitions – How international cooperation can contribute to the NDC’s and long-term strategies: a case from the Sino-German Track II Dialogue” side event at COP27. The discussion was hosted in the China Pavilion in Sharm el-Sheikh on November 10, 2022.
The event was attended by Jennifer Morgan, State Secretary for German Federal Foreign Ministry and Special Envoy for International Climate Action, and XIE Zhenhua, Special Envoy on Climate Change of the People’s Republic of China, representatives from UBA and NCSC, as well as experts and scholars from both German and Chinese institutions.
Mr. XIE opened the event with remarks highlighting China’s progress in the implementation of its national strategy to combat climate change over the last decade. Mr. XIE identified three challenges which can be addressed through expert exchange and cooperation: first, balancing energy security with energy transition and the acceleration of renewables; second, driving innovation in technology, mechanization, and finance to promote energy transition and drive low carbon transformation; third, improvement and expansion of carbon market mechanisms. Mr. XIE expressed the wish to draw on lessons learned from Germany and Europe’s emission trading system experiences and pointed to the recent meeting between Chancellor Scholz and President Xi as an established foundation for such cooperation. Mr. XIE closed with the expectation that this Track II dialogue will continue to provide support for practical climate change cooperation between China, Germany, and the European Union.
Ms. Morgan echoed similar sentiments, commending the Track II dialogue for promoting understanding between the two countries while also accelerating climate action. Ms. Morgan’s remarks emphasized the importance of China as a partner for climate action; citing recent extreme weather events in both countries and their solutions as a potential ground for convergence and cooperation. She also reiterated the need to reduce fossil fueled energy consumption and simultaneously accelerate the development of renewables in order to achieve emission targets. Commenting on climate policy, she alluded to the unique learning opportunity for Germany – observing the implementation of swift measures by China.
In a key-note presentation, “Non-exhaustive recommendations to a Green Transition: Joint views from Chinese and German experts,” Mr. XU Huaqing, Director-General of NCSC, reported on the progress of the Track II dialogue to date. Mr. XU briefed attendees on the progress of join recommendations from German and China experts to promote long-term national strategy implementation. Mr. XU was followed by Ms. Laurence Tubiana, CEO of the European Climate Foundation. Ms. Tubiana presented “The contribution of high-level expert dialogue to decision making and international cooperation – the case of ‘Friends of Paris Agreement,’” giving an overview of the contribution of this forum to global climate cooperation.
The event concluded in a panel discussion attended by Mr. Jan Peter Schemmel, Oeko-Institute, Ms. Frauke Röser, NewClimate Institute, Mr. WANG Yi, National Panel of Experts on Climate Change (NPECC), Mr. WANG Zhongying, Energy Research Institute, National Development and Reform Commission, Member of NPECC, and Ms. Susanne Dröge, UBA. The panel discussed ways in which international cooperation can promote effective climate policy implementation.
Sino-German Track II Dialogue Background
The Sino-German Track II Dialogue on Climate Change and Sustainable Development has supported regular exchange between Chinese and German experts since December 2020. Organised by the National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (NCSC) and the Federal Environment Agency (UBA) with the support of the GIZ-implemented IKI project Sino-German Cooperation on Climate Change – Climate Partnership, the dialogue is divided into four working groups: Emissions Trading, Green Economic Growth, Emissions Data Collection and Long-Term Emissions Reduction Strategies. In the course of 2021 and so far in 2022, various working group meetings as well as higher-level meetings within the Track 2 dialogue have taken place. For example, the co-chairs of the Track II dialogue, Prof. Messner, President of UBA, and XU Huaqing, Director of NCSC, also met during the 26th World Climate Conference in Glasgow to discuss upcoming topics of the T2D.