China has pledged to peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060. Cities are the main battleground for China to meet its climate targets. Chinese cities contribute about 85% of energy-related carbon dioxide emissions and house 60% of the population, with an additional 255 million urban residents expected by 2050.

Green, low-carbon, healthy cities are essential to China’s future. WRI China facilitates better integration of top-down and bottom-up policies and peer-to-peer transfer of knowledge and experiences between provinces and cities to accelerate subnational actions. The goal is to ensure carbon emissions peak as early as possible before 2030, and that carbon neutrality targets are met well before 2060.

WRI’s work involves three key leverage points and interventions:

1. National Support

We support the national government to design top-down policies that can enable and expedite subnational climate actions in provinces and cities, including incorporating carbon assessments into urban planning and development processes.

2. Province and City Support

We work bottom-up to demonstrate the pathway to carbon neutrality. We partner with provinces and cities to support them in planning for a rapid low-carbon transition and to pilot innovative solutions.

3. Exchange and Engagement

We work to create a “race to zero” environment among provinces and cities toward carbon neutrality and facilitate more knowledge exchange through a coalition of cities and partners across the private and public sector, as well as a platform featuring city-level data on emissions, climate targets and actions, and other key metrics. Lessons learned and best practices are scaled up and fed into city, province and national mechanisms.


Cover image credit: Darmau Lee / Unsplash