China to promote overall green transformation: official

China aims to promote an overall green transformation of economic and social development as outlined in the 14th Five-Year Plan, said the Ministry of Ecology and Environment at a press conference on Tuesday.

Zhuang Guotai, vice minister of Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said that a series of measures will be taken to accelerate low-carbon development, continuously improve the ecological environment, enhance the quality and stability of the ecological system, and better the efficiency of resource utilization in the coming five years.

This year concludes the 13th Five-Year Plan with great achievements in ecological and environmental protection, tackling climate change by controlling carbon emissions, promoting energy conservation, boosting the development of green energy and actively participating in international governance.

In the next five years, breakthroughs are expected in key areas and indicators, such as air quality, carbon emissions intensity, water resources management, utilization of soil, supervision system over environmental and ecological protection as well as the nuclear and radiation security. 

"China will play a more active role in environmental protection by reaching the carbon emissions peak by 2030 and realizing carbon neutrality by 2060," said Zhuang, adding "In order to achieve this goal, we need to further promote transformation of economic structure, energy and industrial structures, improve energy efficiency and focus on developing non-fossil energy sources and enhance carbon sinks."

Having said that, problems still remain. The industrial structure is still heavy chemical-based, energy structure is still dominated by coal and the transportation structure still relies heavily on road freight. Pressing issues still need to be tackled in terms of ecological protection and curbing the incidents of environmental pollution.

"We hope that by implementing the planned measures, both temporary and permanent problems could be solved in terms of environmental protection," said Zhuang.

(All images via VCG.)

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