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The international community is facing a major threat that has been termed as climate change. According to the statements of different observer agencies, the climate of the planet Earth has faced unprecedented changes. Comparing the average climate of the earth a hundred years ago with now, an astonishing difference of 1.5 degrees Celsius could be seen. Some might comment on this issue with respect to the environment alone, completely ignoring the important component of development. Developing countries, despite contributing far less in worsening the climate scenario than the developed countries are facing extreme weather conditions. To tackle this issue on war footings, many countries have ratified agreements like the Paris Climate Agreement. The agreement binds its signatories to enforce measures domestically and locally.
Undoubtedly, China is the biggest economy in the world. It is also the biggest contributor to greenhouse gases. These gases account for the increase in the earth’s temperature. In 2006, China's emissions started to surge. Soon China overtook the USA. Chinese leaders themselves have taken cognizance of the issue. The Chinese government has enforced several measures to tackle this issue. There are different policies enacted to curb the emissions of greenhouse gases. These measures and policies underpin increased economic growth, reducing smog pollution and expanding industries. Of all the policies and measures enforced by the Chinese government, the National Climate Change Program is under discussion.
This plan targets the regions of western, eastern and northern China. These regions witnessed significant changes that were not recorded previously. From 1986 to 2005, twenty consecutive warm winters were witnessed. Droughts and severe floods ravaged different areas in these regions. The sea level along China’s coastline rose above than the global average. China’s glaciers melted at a rapid pace. Against this grim backdrop, the Chinese government tasked the National Development and Reform Commission to chalk out a plan. A plan that would not only compel China to reduce its emissions, but also provide relief to the domestic and international community from suffering due to climate change.
China’s National Climate Change Programme can be viewed at http://en.ndrc.gov.cn/newsrelease/200706/P020070604561191006823.pdf.
For this plan to bear results, all three aspects of sustainability, social, economic and environmental must be achieved simultaneously. Compromising on any one dimension would jeopardize the whole plan that has consumed so many resources of taxpayers. The environmental aspect of sustainability is addressed through this plan in a way that is targeted to reduce the national greenhouse gases emissions. This plan underscored the need for renewable energy in order to reduce the carbon footprint. Solar and wind power energies are being promoted as a result of this plan. The social aspect of sustainability is addressed in this plan by calling the need to control the burgeoning population. Controlling the population means an even distribution of resources among the citizens. The economic aspect of sustainability is of particular importance for both China and the international community. The industrial structure of China has been revamped remarkably through a number of initiatives. This has further boosted the economic growth of China.
There are certain strengths and weaknesses of this plan. Strengths may include that the plan highlights the need for economic restructuring. It calls for improvement in energy efficiency. It demands the utilization of renewable energy. It calls for enforcement of vehicle emission standards. It encouraged comprehensive research and development to tackle climate change. It obliged the government to restore the ecosystem that has been diminished. Aforestation should increase as a result of this plan. Few weaknesses that are worth mentioning that, despite cutting its emission rate to half of its GDP, Chinese emission rates remain at the top of the list. Although the energy produced through coal is acknowledged as hazardous, the production of energy from coal has not been shut down completely.
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