IGSD

Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development

China Releases White Paper and Convenes Press Conference on Climate Change Ahead of COP26


Highlights Include Non-CO2 Greenhouse Gases

27 October 2021 – China released a white paper entitled Responding to Climate Change: China’s Policies and Actions with examples of the country’s actions and achievements to date in addressing climate change, in preparation for the 26th annual negotiations of the United Nations climate change conference (COP26).

Highlights from the White Paper include non-CO2 greenhouse gases (GHGs), with particular focus on HFCs and methane:

  • China provided subsidies for HFC-23 destruction during 2014-2019 in the total amount of 1.4 billion yuan (about 219 million USD) for the destruction of 65,300 tonnes of HFC-23 (equivalent to 966 million tonnes of carbon dioxide);
  • China is promoting the development of environmentally-friendly refrigerants and the reuse and safe treatment of [recycled] refrigerants, in accordance with the Regulation on Administration of Ozone Depleting Substances and the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer;
  • China is supporting enterprise deployment of air-conditioner production lines using low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants;
  • China is accelerating the phaseout of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) and controlling the use of HFCs;
  • China accepted the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer on 17 June 2021; and
  • Chinese oil and gas enterprises established an alliance to control methane emissions.

In a State Council press conference convened on the same day (27 October 2021), the Ministry of Ecology and Environment listed the following action items as the next steps:

  • China will actively implement the climate-change targets provided in its 14th Five-Year Plan;*
  • China will promulgate and implement policies to achieve its carbon-peaking and carbon-neutrality goals;
  • China will promulgate an Implementation Plan for Synergy and Efficiency in Pollution Control and Carbon Reduction;
  • China will promulgate an Interim Regulation on the Management of Carbon Emission Trading and gradually expand the coverage of its carbon market to more high-emission industries;
  • China will establish mechanisms for greenhouse gas data accounting and management, as well as long-term mechanisms for [climate-related] treaty compliance;
  • China will enhance public awareness of and promote green and low-carbon lifestyles;
  • China will promulgate a strategy for national climate-change adaption by 2035; and
  • China will actively participate in international negotiations on climate change and continue to carry out South-South climate-change cooperation.

* For further details on the provisions and targets on non-CO2 GHGs and natural carbon sinks in China’s 14th Five-Year Plan, see IGSD briefing: China’s 14th Five-Year Plan: Overview of Provisions Related to Climate Change; Non-CO2 GHGs, Including SLCPs and Natural Carbon Sinks.

See additional IGSD China references below: