Over the past few years, China, in line with its own development practice, has urged the rest of the world to transition to green, low-carbon, climate-adaptive, and sustainable development. This case study explores a history of national long-term development planning in China and provides some commentary on long-term climate change planning for the country.
China’s use of a problem-oriented, goal-driven strategy facilitated its success. A problem-oriented strategy not only acknowledges that climate change is an environmental problem, but also, a long-term and systemic problem that needs to be addressed with strategic, macro, and systematic thinking. Having specific long-term strategic goals for responding to climate change, which were aligned with China’s two-stage development strategy, allowed the strategy to be even more effective.
Lessons learned include:
- Relevant ministries should formulate their own action plans for climate change in different areas, and capacity-building measures also need to be launched and implemented at local levels
- In addition to focusing on CO2 emissions reduction in the energy sector, China’s strategy should strengthen control of non-CO2 GHG emissions
- China should actively carry out capacity-building to adapt to climate change in sensitive and vulnerable areas such as water resources, agricultural and coastal zones, and other ecosystem
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