CCS and GEI Selected as EcoPartners by U.S. and Chinese National Governments

CCS and GEI Selected as EcoPartners by U.S. and Chinese National Governments

The Center for Climate Strategies (CCS) and their Chinese partner, the Global Environmental Institute (GEI) were recently selected by the U.S. Department of State and Chinese National Development and Reform Commission as one of six new EcoPartners to promote U.S.-China sub national action and cooperation on energy, climate, and economic issues. The EcoPartnership Program was started by the U.S. and Chinese governments in December 2008 when they signed the U.S.-China Ten Year Framework for Cooperation on Energy and Environment in Beijing. The EcoPartnership Framework under the Ten Year Framework is aimed at developing new models of mutually beneficial voluntary agreements between a range of state, local, and private sector organizations, to promote energy security, economic growth, and environmental sustainability in both countries.

Under their EcoPartnership, CCS and GEI will continue to work with national and sub national officials and experts in both countries to build capacity around and adapt CCS’ template and methodology for comprehensive sub national climate action planning to the Chinese provincial context to help China’s provinces achieve their dual economic growth and emissions reduction goals under China’s 12th Five Year Plan. CCS and GEI will also continue their work facilitating information and technical exchange, dialogue, and relationship building between U.S. states and Chinese provinces on energy, climate, and economic issues and cooperative mechanisms.

As part of the activities for the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, the annual formal high level engagement between the U.S. and Chinese national governments on strategic and economic issues co-chaired by the U.S. Departments of State and Treasury on the U.S. side, CCS and GEI participated in a signing ceremony presided over by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton joined by remarks from Chinese National Development and Reform Commission Vice Chair Minister Xie Zhenhua and attended by U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern and U.S. Special Representative for Global Intergovernmental Affairs Reta Jo Lewis.

CCS and GEI also participated in a day-long workshop presided over by U.S. Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Climate Change Coordinator Jeff Miotke and Chinese National Development and Reform Commission Department of International Cooperation Director Ma Xin, which was opened by U.S. State Department Special Representative for Global Intergovernmental Affairs Reta Jo Lewis and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Dan Clune.

Their selection as EcoPartners will enable CCS and GEI to attract more central and sub national support and involvement in their project. CCS and GEI also hope that that support and recognition will also enable them to gain greater financial support for their project. Through the EcoPartnership Program, and their support for and recognition of CCS and GEI’s work, the U.S. and Chinese governments have demonstrated their strong recognition and support for the importance of sub national action in addressing energy, climate, and economic issues.

CCS and GEI have been working together for almost two years to help introduce and adapt to China CCS’ methodology for comprehensive sub national climate action planning and facilitative, fact-finding, and micro and macro economic analysis experience and expertise that has helped U.S. states and their stakeholders achieve consensus around implementing the most cost-effective set of policies across all sectors of the economy. 

Given its role in working with more than 20 U.S. states to develop comprehensive climate action plans that have found opportunities to address energy, economic, and environmental security issues at the same time, CCS was invited to China by GEI and common funders in 2009. With China’s provinces being assigned simultaneous economic growth and carbon intensity reductions goals by the central government, these organizations saw CCS’ template for climate action planning at the sub national level useful for Chinese provinces to build capacity around and use in their long-term policy planning efforts to achieve these dual goals.

Since CCS started working in China, CCS and GEI have facilitated high level central and provincial government and technical expert briefings on climate action planning and macro economic models, a Chinese central and provincial government and technical expert delegation visit to U.S. states CCS has worked with, and a training of Chinese central and provincial technical experts in CCS’ methodology for comprehensive sub national climate action planning. CCS and GEI have also facilitated a growing relationship between New York State, where CCS is currently in the process of facilitating and providing advanced technical assistance to the state’s climate action planning process, and Guangdong Province, which is one of five provinces designated by the NDRC as low carbon development pilots in the current 12th Five Year Plan.

CCS and GEI recently held an official joint side event at the UNFCCC COP16 Climate Negotiations in Cancun, Mexico where officials from the U.S. and Chinese national governments as well as New York State and Guangdong Province spoke about their climate actions and potential areas of collaboration. This growing relationship is an example of the potential for U.S. states and Chinese provinces to engage in relationship building and information exchange, and work together to address common challenges, which CCS and GEI will be working with partners to further in the coming months.

Link to U.S. State Department website with transcript of remarks by Secretary Clinton and Minister Xie and video of the entire signing ceremony: http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2011/05/162947.htm

State Department Fact Sheet “Secretary Clinton Supports Expansion of U.S.-China EcoPartnerships Program,” May 11, 2011: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2011/05/163178.htm

State Department Press Release “Secretary Clinton To Praise Announcement of Six New U.S.-China EcoPartnerships on May 10”: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2011/05/162933.htm

DipNote U.S. Department of State Official Blog Entry “Secretary Clinton Delivers Remarks at the U.S.–China EcoPartnerships Signing Ceremony”: http://blogs.state.gov/index.php/site/entry/us_china_ecopartnerships

EcoPartnership Mention in U.S. Department of State Official Blog Entry “DipNote: The Week in Review”: http://blogs.state.gov/index.php/site/entry/week_2011_05_15

State Department Photos “Secretary Clinton at the EcoPartnerships Signing Ceremony”: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/pix/2011/05/162983.htm

U.S. Department of State Videos “U.S.-China EcoPartnerships”: http://video.state.gov/en/top-stories/video/938492157001/us-china-ecopartnerships/s~creationDate/p~2/?p

U.S. Department of State Flickr photostream photos:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/statephotos/5708573664/in/photostream/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/statephotos/5708006861/in/photostream/

U.S. Department of State Facebook video post “Secretary Clinton Remarks at U.S.-China EcoPartnerships Ceremony”: http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=130316013712372&oid=15877306073&comments

U.S. Department of State Facebook “U.S.–China Strategic and Economic Dialogue (S&ED): May 9-10, 2011” photo album: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150167590721074.300574.15877306073

Rockefeller Brothers Fund Post “Two RBF Grantees Selected to be EcoPartners”: http://www.rbf.org/post/two-rbf-grantees-selected-be-ecopartners

Global Environmental Institute Post “GEI and CCS Become US-China ‘Eco-Partners’”: http://www.geichina.org/index.php?controller=News&action=View&nid=135

Global Environmental Institute Post “Senior US, China officials attend GEI-CCS Eco-Partnership Signing Ceremony”: http://www.geichina.org/index.php?controller=News&action=View&nid=137