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Low Carbon Economic Development - Key for Economic Growth and S

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					                          Conference on
            Low Carbon Economic Development -

 Key for Economic Growth and Sustainable Development

                              Beijing

                          27 March 2010

                 Speech by German Ambassador

                       Dr. Michael Schaefer



Lord Nicolas Stern,
Mr. Su Wei,
dear Ambassador Abou,
Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,


I am pleased to join you at this important conference.


The German Federal Minister for the Environment, Dr. Norbert
Röttgen, has asked me to pass on his best wishes for a
successful conference. He would have liked to participate, but
had to defer his visit to Beijing until early April.


The smoke after Kopenhagen has lifted a bit, emotions have
calmed down on all sides, and we are in a better position today
to take stock, see where we stand and compare notes. I think it
would be wrong to entertain in blame games, we should rather
look forward and discuss where we stand and where we need to
intensify our efforts to make this process successful.


To start on a positive note: I am confident that all major players
- industrialized countries, emerging economies and developing
countries - have understood and agree, that our action in trying
to fight climate change is probably the most important single
issue which we are facing globally.


And it certainly is, if we take a strategic perspective.


One thing is clear and should guide us: if we fail to produce
substantive results sufficient of containing global warming
below an increase of 2 centigrades, we will confront our
children and grandchildren with a disaster of historic
proportions.


So where do we stand after Kopenhagen?


We believe:
The Copenhagen Accord was an important step, but it did
not take us far enough.


The Accord has won the support of more than 100 countries
and thus can be seen as a solid basis for future actions.


In substance, what we achieved in Copenhagen was reaching a
consensus on the
2 °C objective. And we have reached a common understanding
that implementing this goal will require decisive steps from
both developed and developing countries. Action by all of us is
imperative, although we will continue to be guided by the
principle of common but differentiated responsibility.




For the German government the fight against climate change
has a very high priority. We have therefore noted with
appreciation national contributions pledged since Copenhagen.


This is, in particular, true for the pledges made by China,
because they have been made on the basis of decisions already
taken and thus binding for the Chinese authorities.


We are confident that these pledges are a first important step
ahead towards achieving our common goal. But we are
convinced that the sum of all pledges made will not be
sufficient in meeting our objective to undercut the 2 degree
limit.
For all of us, there is room and we therefore need to take
additional steps forward.


In Copenhagen, we have made great progress regarding the
transparency, in particular how to measure, report and verify
our respective national actions and climate strategies. Progress
has also been made on the issue of international financing.


So we feel encouraged to say: the glass is half full.


In the next phase of our negotiations it will be important to
safeguard this progress and to build on it.


Our negotiations leading up to the next Conference of the
Parties   in   Mexico      must   produce    further    substantive
breakthroughs. The decisions of Cancun should integrate the
main elements of the Copenhagen Accord, build on it and
should lead us towards a global legally binding framework.


Germany, Europe, China – we all have to contribute.


And let me go even further: we should take a joint lead in
steering this process, Europe being the champion among
industrialized countries, and China having decided the most
substantial policies among emerging economies.


Together we can and should take the process forward and
ensure that the important achievements of the Kyoto-Protocol
are not lost on the way.


Ladies and Gentlemen,
from our own development in Europe we have learned that a
low carbon economic development not only contributes to the
protection of our natural environment, but is a key factor to
qualitative economic growth, and thus a the key to sustainable
development.


We have to bring about fundamental changes in the way we
live, produce, consume and organize our societies, if we want
to ward off a dangerous change in climate.


As one result of the recent global economic crisis we know that
we cannot continue with strategies of growth as before, that we
rather need new, socially and environmentally sound growth
which is sustainable.


We need a growth strategy linked to energy and resource-
efficient technologies.


I was impressed by the vision of the Chinese Premier Wen
Jiabao who - in his report to the recent NPC - explained China's
policy decision to establish a "low carbon economy" and to
shift towards an environmental economy as a driving force in
achieving a sustainable economic growth.


China, it seems, has decided a remarkable change of parameters
which we welcome.
Energy and resource efficiency will be decisive factors for the
competitiveness of a modern economy. Investments in energy
efficiency and renewable energies will give us threefold profit:
      ●   They will contribute to prevent the costs of climate
          change,
      ●   they will lower the costs for energy supply in the
          future and
      ●   they will make energy supply safer and avoid
          expensive imports.


As we can see in China, a crisis can contribute to accelerate
economic change and necessary structural reforms in industry
offering opportunities for new and promising markets.


Germany has gone through this experience during the past
decades. And we have come out of it stronger than before.
Future-oriented investments have resulted in targeted support
for innovation and the development of new processes,
technologies and products.


We very much welcome China’s decision to invest in green
technologies and to establish a circular economy.


We are impressed by the rapid progress on electro mobility in
China, as we follow with keen interest the progress made in
installing wind and solar energy. As a report published by Pew
Charitable Trust is indicating, China in 2009, for the first time,
has taken the lead worldwide in investments into clean
energies.


In all of these areas, Germany and China have been working
together closely and I see enormous opportunities for our
bilateral cooperation.


China as the worlds largest and fastest growing Co-2 emitter,
has become a key player in global climate negotiations.


We understand the need for long-term development processes
in China, and let me emphasize: we support China's right to
such further development.


But we also trust that the Chinese government understands its
responsibility to do its utmost to contribute to our common
endeavour up to the very limits of its capabilities.


Only our mutual maximum effort will ensure that we solve
this global challenge successfully.


The German government will continue to support China in its
efforts, including through bilateral projects financed by the
International Climate Initiative of the German Federal Ministry
for the Environment.


The economy of the future will be based on smart, clean, low
carbon efficient technologies and infrastructures.


The question is how fast and at what scale we will engage.
Countries that take action quickly will benefit the most. I trust
that our two countries will take a pivotal role in this process.

I thank all those who have organized this conference and wish
you best of success.



Thank you for your attention.

				
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