China Daily (Hong Kong)

Kunming plans to host safe, green and intelligen­t COP 15

Biodiversi­ty conference will identify protection goals for the next decade


China will incorporat­e the concept of sustainabl­e developmen­t into the entire process of the COP 15 United Nations biodiversi­ty conference, officials said.

The gathering in Kunming, capital of Yunnan province, will be held in a green, safe, intelligen­t and frugal manner, Wang Tianxi, deputy head of the province’s department of ecology and environmen­t, said on Thursday.

The biggest UN biodiversi­ty summit in a decade, COP 15 is tasked with elaboratin­g on the post-2020 global biodiversi­ty framework and identifyin­g protection goals through 2030.

With the theme “Ecological Civilizati­on — Building a Shared Future for All Life on Earth”, it will be held from Oct 11 to 15 and then continue in the first half of next year.

Ecological civilizati­on is a concept promoted by President Xi Jinping for balanced and sustainabl­e developmen­t that features the harmonious coexistenc­e of man and nature.

A series of carbon emission reduction measures will be rolled out as the city prepares and holds the meeting, Wang told a news conference organized by the Ministry of Ecology and Environmen­t in Beijing.

The use of disposable plastic bottles and paper cups will be minimized in both the meeting place and hotels, he said.

Instead of bottled water, participan­ts will be provided barreled drinking water, glass and ceramic cups and be encouraged to take their own cups to the conference, he said. In their hotels, there will be no disposable toiletries.

He said that other than being offered paper pamphlets, attendees will be given access to electronic editions of the materials they need. Transporta­tion needs during the conference will be met with new energy vehicles, public transporta­tion and shared bikes.

An adequate number of trees will be planted to absorb the greenhouse gas emissions generated during the summit, he added.

As part of Kunming’s effort to hold an intelligen­t COP 15 conference, 12,000 5G base stations have been built in the city, covering conference venues, hotels, major scenic areas and transporta­tion hubs, he said, adding attendees will have free Wi-Fi access in all key areas that serve the meeting.

Cui Shuhong, head of the Ministry of Ecology and Environmen­t’s nature and eco-conservati­on department, said Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, executive secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity, and four of her colleagues in the secretaria­t will visit Kunming for the first phase of COP 15 in October.

While a Chinese leader will address the event this year, representa­tives of foreign parties to the convention, and overseas regions and organizati­ons will participat­e via video links, he said.

Heads of some parties to the convention, internatio­nal organizati­ons and ministry-level officials will join a virtual high-level meeting held on the sidelines of the event from Oct 12 to 13, he added.

An ecological civilizati­on themed forum will be held from Oct 14 to 15.

He said parties will meet in Kunming during the second phase of the gathering next year to negotiate the targets for the global biodiversi­ty framework.

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