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"China and US must lead on climate"

As US secretary of state Hillary Clinton arrives in China, an open letter from Greenpeace urges the two countries to cooperate on reviving the global economy without sacrificing human health or the environment.

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19 February 2009
The Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
United States of America

H. E. Mr Yang Jiechi
Foreign Minister
People's Republic of China

Dear Madam Secretary
Dear Minister Yang

Greenpeace welcomes the first visit of secretary of state Hillary Clinton to China.

Meetings this week between your governments will be closely watched not only by those in China and the United States but also by people around the world. They will be watching for signs of leadership, signs of partnership and signs of a common commitment to end both the most serious economic crisis the world has faced in decades and the most profound environmental crisis humanity has ever faced.

This year will be significant for many reasons. It will bring the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China; the 30th anniversary of Premier Deng Xiaoping’s visit to the United States; and the first year in office of an already historic US president.

Most importantly, it is the year in which the international community, meeting in Copenhagen in December, must agree on urgent and dramatic action to avert the looming climate disaster and define the path toward a more sustainable, more survivable future. Strong leadership from the US and China, acting together, is essential to reaching an agreement in Copenhagen. We are writing to respectfully urge you to demonstrate that leadership.

Already, we have seen positive signs. In recent weeks, the US has developed an economic stimulus package that includes substantial investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy, demonstrating that economic recovery and environmental sustainability are mutually supportive goals. At the same time, China has begun work on a new energy law that places strong emphasis on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, demonstrating that greener development is not only possible but also desirable.

For decades now, Greenpeace has worked to call global attention to the reality and the risks of climate change. We have also been at the forefront of demands for a genuinely clean energy revolution, calling for changes to the way energy is currently generated and delivered and for a massive investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy. The current economic crisis provides an unprecedented opportunity to make these investments in a way that creates jobs, rebuilds critical infrastructure and lays the foundation for a new energy economy in both nations.

To that end, we urge China and the US to explore deeper collaboration between their energy efficiency and renewable energy industries, to create a new development model that meets energy demands, moves both nations away from coal, and generates millions of green jobs without sacrificing human health or the environment. Just as importantly, we urge you to work together to outline a financial mechanism that is equitable, workable and adequate to foster greener development not only in China but also throughout southern nations.

But as climate leaders, China and the US can and must do more. We ask that the leaders of both countries, president Barack Obama and president Hu Jintao, issue a joint statement at the G20 Summit in April in which they commit themselves to finding climate solutions, including securing the necessary funding, and call upon leaders around the world to join them in that effort. And we respectfully urge both leaders to personally attend the Copenhagen climate talks to ensure the success of those efforts.

The summer melting of the Arctic, more severe hurricanes, increasing drought, wildfires and heatwaves; these impacts are all signs of an increasingly chaotic climate system that will undermine the economic and development goals of all nations.

Time is running out. Dr James Hansen, a leading climatologist from NASA, recently stated that the world is now in “imminent peril”. The window for avoiding that peril is narrow, and closing rapidly, but it is not yet closed. With the right leadership, we can bring global greenhouse gas emissions under control, set them on a downward trajectory, and avoid the most catastrophic impacts of climate change. As the largest local greenhouse emitters, the US and China have an historic opportunity to show that decisive leadership and ensure the strong climate protection needed to foster real and sustainable economic security. Commitments from both nations may differ but the urgency of the task facing us means every nation must play their part.

Secretary Clinton’s visit to Beijing falls 37 years to the day after former US president Richard Nixon’s historic visit to the same city marked the start of a new era of peace and cooperation for our countries. We trust that your meetings will be similarly remembered by future generations as a critical step that resulted in a legacy of climate protection, clean energy and stronger, sustainable economies.

Sincerely


Sze Pang Cheung
Director of Campaigns
Greenpeace China

Lisa Finaldi
Director of Campaigns
Greenpeace US

Homepage photo from US Department of State

 

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发表评论 Post a comment

评论通过管理员审核后翻译成中文或英文。 最大字符 1200。

Comments are translated into either Chinese or English after being moderated. Maximum characters 1200.

评论 comments

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

我们达成协议吧!

美国和中国达成气候问题的协议的时间已经很少。我真诚的愿望就是这个会议会实现更多实惠的结果。这样一来我们能够避免全球灾难。
(Jacob Fromer翻译)

Let's make a deal!

Time really is running out for a climate deal between the US and China. I sincerely hope that this meeting produces more tangible results so that we can avert global disaster.

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

希拉里会是一个好的国务卿吗?

希拉里•克林顿能够成为一名好的国务卿吗?大家都是怎么想的?
translated by diaoshuhuan

Will Clinton make a good secretary of state?

Will Clinton make a good secretary of state? What does everyone think?

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

希拉里●克林顿一定会成为一位好的国务卿

希拉里●克林顿是富有经验、智慧、婉转,又能坚持原则。我认为她能胜任为标准的国务卿。张素梅翻译

Clinton will definitely make a good secretary of state

Clinton is experienced, knowledgeable, tactful, and ready to stand by what she believes in. I think that makes her a perfect secretary of state.
Crystal, US

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

即使非常困难,依然需要抉择

公开信很有意义。“不识庐山真面目,只缘身在此山中。”处在困难经济环境下的两国政府,似乎需要第三方提出建设性观点。
中国目前还在对抗干旱,面临农民工就业问题,中小企业如何度过难关,同时兼顾环保长远利益?
政府希望通过大规模开工公共基础设施建设缓解经济紧张,如何兼顾环保利益?
大学毕业生就业紧张,城市居民如何在为子女担忧的同时,也关心环境问题?
似乎这些都需要冷静、平衡,但又可行、不偏激的策略。公开信是个表率。

Even though the subject is difficult, we need to make decisions

The open letter makes a lot of sense. Just like the phrase "Not knowing the true face of Mountain Lu because one lives on it" both countries are facing economic crisis now, so a third party has to give some constructive suggestions. Currently China is confronting several problems including drought, the migrant peasant workers seeking employment, and small and medium sized companies facing difficulties. And now China is supposed to take the long-term environmental interests into consideration? The government plans to end the financial slump by expanding construction of infrastructure on a large-scale--how can it manage to take environmental interests into account? University graduates are confronted with an awful job market while their parents get anxious about their children's futures. How can you ask them to spare time to show interest in environmental problems? It seems the best option uses reason and balance, and is feasible and not radical. The open letter is a perfect example.

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

Greenpeace

“美中两国总共释放出全球40%以上的温室气体”

气候变化是一个全球性问题
希望中美顺利成为气候合作伙伴
携手保护我们共同的星球

Greenpeace

“The United States & China contribute 40% of global greenhouse-gas emissions.”
Climate change is a global issue. I
hope the United States and China can cooperate on climate issues as partners and work together to protect our environment.

(translated by Fangfang CHEN)

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

个人也需要考虑环境利益

公开信这个主意固然好,但个人和政府都需要思考环境利益问题。如果我们浪费了所有的土壤、水和空气,我们就不再会有多余的资源。如果我们没有了多余的资源,经济也就不复存在了。这个时候,再担心让自己的孩子找个工作已经太迟。

评论由 余淼 翻译

Individuals need to think about environmental interests too

An open letter is a good idea, but individuals and governments need to start thinking about environmental interests too. If we waste all of our soil, water, and air, we will have no more resources. If we have no more resources, then there will be no more economy. Then it will be too late to just worry about making sure your own children get a job.

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

行动起来吧

衷心的祝福我们和美国的合作愉快.
让我们也行动起来吧.加强环保意识,从身边做起,从小事做起.我们十几亿的人口的所做的小事,必定会有显著效果的.

Start Acting

I wholeheartedly wish for such cheerful cooperation between us and America. It is going to let us act. Starting with ourselves, starting with the little things, we can build awareness of environmental protection. Those little things that our billion-plus population does are sure to have a remarkable result.
(Translated by Jacob Fromer)

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

所谓“天灾”

今年北方遇上大旱,去年南方遭遇雪灾,如果再不重视生态环境的话,也许,中国经济增长的成果都会被这些“天灾”所抵消掉。如果人们还对环境保护抱着“与己无关”的想法,也许,有朝一日我们会体会到欲哭无泪的心情。

so-called "natural disasters"

This year severe drought threatened north China, and a rare snowstorm swept across the south. It is possible that the gains of China's economic growth will be offset by these "natural disasters", if we don't pay attention to the ecological environment. It is also possible that someday our eyes will have no more tears to cry, if people still believe that environmental protection is not our concern.(Translated by Tian Liang)

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

美国啊美国

美国常以世界领导自居,贵为已发展国家,
却常常要我们这些吃不饱的发展中国家跟它一起搞环保。

美国消耗的能源、废弃物量比许多发展中国家为高,却要求我们先不顾人民温饱,并用同样力度处理环境问题。

这是领导的表现吗?
比较像是以大欺小吧。

America, oh America...

America often poses as the world's leader, and as an already developed country it often asks starving, developing countries to work with them to protect the environment.
America's quantity of waste is even higher than that of developing countries, but first they ask us not to consider whether or not people have enough food and clothing, then they ask us for the same amount of intensity in dealing with problems in the environment.
Isn't this just the leaders showing off? It seems a bit like the strong are picking on the weak.

(Translated by Braden Latham-Jones.)

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

金融风暴,应该更猛烈一点!

我请教:这场金融危机和全球环境危机而言,能算得了什么?难道人类真的就被这个虚张声势的金融风暴给刮倒了吗?想想吧,北极的冰层,再过几年就要全部消融了,届时引发的环境灾难,绝对一发不可收拾!为什么我们的领导人都去关注金融危机了,原先对环保的关注都去哪里了?领导人们怎么一律都变得如此目光短漏了?

金融风暴毁灭不了地球,能毁灭人类文化的,恰恰是环境污染危机!

Let the financial storm hit harder!

I'd like to ask, how much does the financial crisis matter when compared with global environmental crisis? Are humans so fragile to be easily hit down by the seemingly disastrous financial storm? Just think of it, icebergs in the Arctic would disappear within a few years,with the environmental catastrophes ensuing, after which chain effects would hardly stop! Why do all our leaders switch their attention to the financial crisis, and where have their concerns about environmental protection gone? How can they become so short-sighted? The financial storm can't destroy our earth, and it will be the environmental pollution that burns man's civilization to ash!
(translated by diaoshuhuan)