BEIJING (June 8, 2016)— At the second China-US Climate Smart/Low Carbon Cities Summit, representatives from more than 50 cities came together to enhance cooperation on low-carbon development. Twelve Chinese cities pledged to peak their carbon emissions earlier than China’s national target of 2030, joining the 11 founding cities and provinces of the Alliance of Peaking Pioneer Cities (APPC). The APPC was launched in 2015 at the China-US Climate-Smart/Low Carbon Cities Summit. The 23 Chinese cities represent 17 percent of China’s population, 28 percent of national GDP, and 16 percent of national carbon dioxide emissions.

Following statement is from Manish Bapna, executive vice president and managing director, World Resources Institute:

“It is remarkable to see city leaders from Phoenix, Boston and Knoxville standing side-by-side with their Chinese counterparts in recognition that cities must play a central role in solving today’s global climate challenge.

“Faced with increasing pressure from more vehicles and growing energy demand, Chinese cities are starting to move from laggards to leaders when it comes to limiting emissions. What is particularly noteworthy is that 23 Chinese cities and provinces have agreed to peak their emissions by or before 2030, and 8 by or before 2020. For example, Beijing and Guangzhou have agreed to peak by 2020.

“With China’s cities poised to increase by nearly 300 million people by 2050, the urgency to develop a sustainable urban growth model is clear. The benefits of developing low-carbon cities are increasingly apparent: better public health, improved urban mobility and cost savings through energy efficiency, to name just a few.

“Building on the foundation of the Paris Agreement, the cities summit is another example of how it will take leadership at all levels to deliver on last year’s commitments. City leaders are on the front lines of the climate challenge and with strong conviction they can implement solutions that will improve the lives of billions of people and offer a new blueprint for sustainable urbanization worldwide.”