China and the European Union on Monday signed an agreement to expand their environmental cooperation by creating an Institute of Clean and Renewable Energy.
EU External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner and Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng signed the accord while the EU’s top diplomat was visiting Beijing as the European Union seeks to work with China on improving its energy efficiency and implementing more environmentally sound ways to burn coal, from which China gets three-quarters of its electricity.
The European Union is providing 10 million euros (13.3 million dollars) to found the Beijing institute along with the Chinese Commerce and Education ministries.
The institute’s establishment is aimed at implementing China’s energy policies, particularly those concerning renewable energy and energy efficiency, the European Union said.
It is to be run by leading European and Chinese academic institutions and expected to bring together experts on renewable energy.
The institute’s school was expected to take on about 100 students per year.
Climate change was playing an important role in Ferrero-Waldner’s visit to the Chinese capital, and she said the change in the US government was making it easier to talk with the Chinese about the topic.
The previous US administration had been criticized for obstructing anti-global-warming initiatives. China, which along with the US, is the world’s largest greenhouse-gas emitter, had continuously said under former president George W Bush that the countries that had industrialized early had a bigger responsibility to reduce emissions that cause global warming, and insisted Washington take part in initiatives to reduce pollutants.
Ferrero-Waldner welcomed current US President Barack Obama’s invitation to a climate change forum for the world’s major economies as well as his change in policy from his predecessor.
She told reporters that the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate April 27-28 in Washington – which the United States, 16 other major economies and the United Nations are to attend – was a good proposal ‘in which we recognize the new position of the Obama administration.’
Read more: “China, EU to establish renewable energy institute” – http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/asiapacific/news/article_1467665.php/China_EU_to_establish_renewable_energy_institute_#ixzz0BJjlCwUh