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Yangtze River Delta region should set 'green' example, official says


A senior environmental official on Thursday called the Yangtze River Delta region to play an exemplary role in exploring a low-carbon and sustainable development path as China forges ahead to go carbon neutral.

Zhao Yingmin, vice-minister of Ecology and Environment, made the remark in the 2021 Roundtable of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development in Suzhou, Jiangsu province.

The 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25) period is a vital phase for China's ecological conservation drive that aims for overall green transformation of economic and social development through coordinated progress in pollution reduction and carbon emissions cuts, he said.

Zhao also stressed that carbon reduction will be a key strategic direction in the period.

China aims to peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and go carbon neutral before 2060.

"Achieving carbon dioxide emission peaking and carbon neutrality requires broad and profound changes in economic and social systems," he said.

Zhao said the Yangtze River Delta, as a highly open region with high economic vitality and innovative capability, could play an important and demonstrative role as the country endeavors to bring its climate targets into reality.

The region is expected to align ecological civilization with socioeconomic development, he said.

Ecological civilization is a concept promoted advocating balanced and sustainable development.

The China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development is a high-level international advisory body composed of officials and experts from home and abroad that gives policy advice to the Chinese government.

Established in 2008, the roundtable is held once a year to share the results of CCICED policy research with decision-makers at local governments, and discuss hot topics, challenges, and urgent issues on environment and development.

The roundtable this year is themed building a community with shared future for humanity: synergies between pollution control and carbon emission reduction.

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