Chinese Premier to Attend Copenhagen Talks and China Announces Carbon Intensity Target

WASHINGTON (November 26) – China announced today that Premier Wen Jiabao will attend the Copenhagen climate summit and that China will commit to reducing its carbon intensity by 40 to 45 percent from 2005 levels by 2020.

The following is a statement from Barbara Finamore, China Program Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council:

"This is a significant announcement that moves international climate negotiations forward and confirms China’s commitment to addressing climate change. Taken together with yesterday’s announcement from the Obama administration, China’s announcement provides additional momentum for the negotiations by signaling that the world’s two largest emitters want to make Copenhagen a success. President Obama will attend the Copenhagen summit and will bring a commitment to reduce U.S. emissions in the range of 17 percent from 2005 levels by 2020.

“Given the urgency of addressing climate change, we would like to see both China and the United States, as the world’s largest emitters, raise the level of their ambition in Copenhagen and aim for the higher end of their ranges.

“We believe both countries can do more to speed their transition to a clean energy economy that will create jobs in the United States and China, reduce our reliance on dirty fossil fuels and help to curb climate change.

 “China can achieve its goal of reducing carbon intensity substantially while continuing to grow its economy and providing an improved standard of living and a better environment for its citizens.”