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Impressive Results in Ecological Conservation

By Qiu Ping Source: Updated: 2023-12-18

Environmental quality

China has achieved the fastest improvement in air quality in the world. The proportion of surface water meeting good or excellent water quality standards (Grade I-III) has risen to 87.9%, which is close to the standards of developed countries. Black and odorous water bodies in cities at and above the prefectural level have been basically eliminated.

The main stem of the Yangtze River has reached the Grade II water quality standard along its entire course for three consecutive years, and the main stem of the Yellow River achieved the Grade II water quality standard along its entire course for the first time. The proportion of coastal waters across the country achieving good or excellent water quality standards has increased by 17.6 percentage points.

Soil environmental risks have been effectively controlled, and China has achieved its goal of zero imports of solid waste on schedule, resulting in a cumulative reduction of 100 million tons of solid waste imports.

Ecological conservation

China is a global leader in reducing desertification and sandification. The areas of nature reserves and ecological conservation redlines account for 18% and 30% of China’s total land area, respectively.

A total of 68 million hectares has been afforested. Forest coverage has risen to 24.02%, giving China the largest and fastest growing forest resources and the largest area of cultivated forests in the world, with 87.6 million hectares of preserved cultivated forests. China’s total forest coverage and forest stock have both increased for more than 30 consecutive years.

The first batch of five national parks has been established, and China’s first national botanical garden and first seed bank have been developed. The wild populations of more than 300 rare and endangered wild animals and plants have also increased steadily.

Green development

Average annual growth of 3% in China’s energy consumption has supported average annual economic growth of more than 6%, and China has achieved a cumulative reduction in energy intensity of 26.4%, one of the fastest reductions in the world. Carbon intensity has fallen by a total of more than 35%, reversing the trend of rapid growth in carbon dioxide emissions.

China has built the world’s largest carbon market and clean power generation system. Coal’s proportion of total energy consumption has fallen to 56.2%, while that of clean energy has increased to 25.9%. Installed renewable energy capacity accounts for 47.3% of China’s total national installed power generation capacity, exceeding the installed capacity of coal. China leads the world in installed capacities of hydropower, wind power, solar power, and biomass power.

China has also ranked first in the world for production and sales of new energy vehicles for eight consecutive years.

Global contributions

From the lofty perspective of our sense of responsibility to human civilization, we proposed building a community of all life on Earth and working together to create a cleaner and more beautiful world.

We have backed the implementation of the Paris Agreement and made a solemn commitment to achieving peak carbon and carbon neutrality. China, which was in the chair as president, successfully hosted the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP15). It led to the adoption of the ambitious yet pragmatic Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, which drew widespread praise from the international community.

China has developed the Belt and Road Initiative International Green Development Coalition and launched the Initiative for Belt and Road Partnership on Green Development with 31 participating countries. China has also proactively engaged in South-South cooperation to address climate change.