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China to focus on energy efficiency post-Kyoto: state media

China has so far failed to meet the annual four-percent target for growth in energy efficiency, although it is gradually doing better.
by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) May 15, 2009
China may pledge to improve its energy efficiency by a wide margin in the post-Kyoto years rather than commit to direct cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, state media said Friday.

This will be the energy-guzzling Asian giant's main contribution to world efforts to curb greenhouse gases from 2013 to 2020 under a new pact currently being negotiated to replace the Kyoto Protocol, the China Daily reported.

"China will probably promise to achieve the same energy-saving target as it is doing during the 2006-2010 period," the paper quoted an unnamed planning official as saying.

Between 2006 and 2010, China mandated four percent annual cuts in its energy consumption per unit of gross domestic product.

China has so far failed to meet the annual four-percent target for growth in energy efficiency, although it is gradually doing better.

In the first three months of 2009, it cut average energy consumption by 2.9 percent compared with a year earlier, recent state media reports said.

China will also insist developed nations take the lead by pledging up to 40 percent cuts in greenhouse gas emissions during the period as part of ongoing negotiations for a post-Kyoto deal, the paper said.

According to Li Gao, a climate change official with the nation's economic planning agency, China will make public its position on the United Nations climate change negotiations within two weeks, the paper said.

Climate change negotiators will meet in Copenhagen in December to hammer out the new deal to replace the Kyoto Protocol.

China has previously called for developed nations to cut greenhouse gas emissions by between 15 and 40 percent, while also ramping up funding for clean energy technology to developing nations.

As a developing nation China under Kyoto did not accept cuts in greenhouse emissions, which are blamed for global warming, leading to higher sea levels and other potentially disastrous changes in the climate.

China is one of the world's largest emitters of greenhouse gases.

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