Strengthening the California-China Clean Energy & Climate Change Partnership

By California Energy Commission Chair Robert B. Weisenmiller 

California’s efforts to combat climate change through innovative policies, advanced technologies and effective programs are demonstrating to the world that having a strong economy, a clean energy system and a healthy environment are not mutually exclusive. But, California cannot tackle climate change alone and China plays a crucial role in the global economy and in cutting the global risks of climate change. To continue expanding California’s collaboration with China, I led a state delegation to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and Hong Kong earlier this month. The delegation included representatives from the California Energy Commission, California Air Resources Board, California Environmental Protection Agency, the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, and the California Independent System Operator.

During the trip, the delegation:
  • Renewed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in 2013 between California and the Province of Guangdong and discussed plans to renew other expiring MOUs with California’s Chinese partners.
  • Furthered our cooperation with the Province of Guangdong by discussing activities and initiatives aimed at addressing new and emerging electricity sector challenges and opportunities.
  • Shared information about greenhouse gas reduction commitments and actions in preparation for the United Nations Conference of Parties 21 scheduled for this December in Paris to negotiate a global climate change agreement.
  • Explored business development opportunities for California clean energy companies interested in entering or expanding operations in Chinese markets.

This latest state delegation to China builds upon the foundation laid by Governor Edmund G. Brown’s April 2013 trade mission to China, which focused on expanding trade and collaborating on initiatives to combat climate change, advance clean energy and improve air quality.

A number of MOUs were signed during the trade mission, creating a solid foundation for California and Chinese government agencies, businesses, civil society, and academia to cooperate with one another. Since then, California has worked with its Chinese partners to develop networking and development opportunities for businesses, hosted forums to exchange clean energy policy information and best practices, and provided technical expertise to inform the development of China’s pilot carbon emission trading systems.

I’m proud to continue California’s relationship with China to tackle energy and environmental issues as we face the challenge of balancing economic prosperity with environmental stewardship. California and China are making great strides and we are committed to ensuring a sustainable future for our citizens.

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California Energy Commission

The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency created by the Legislature in 1974.
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