The environment at the heart of cooperation between the SDC and China

Article, 13.01.2017

The SDC is present in China. It is currently undertaking six programmes targeting climate change and pollution. A Sino-Swiss programme aims to promote the efforts of Chinese cities to adopt a climate-friendly approach.

A thick cloud of smoke rises from a factory in Huai’an City in eastern China.
A thick cloud of smoke rises from a factory in Huai’an City in eastern China.

Climate change is a global problem. At the Paris Climate Conference in 2015, the international community undertook not to exceed an increase of 2°C in the global average temperature by 2030. The countries that account for the largest proportion of the greenhouse emissions responsible for climate change – China 25%, United States 15.5%, Europe 11% – are the first that must reduce their emissions. China has already announced a significant decrease in its carbon intensity by 2030.

Some 4,000 Chinese citizens die every day from air pollution-related causes. People living in cities are particularly affected. Switzerland and China are working together to counter the negative impact on human health and climate change caused by urban growth in the world’s third largest country. The Sino-Swiss Low Carbon Cities project, officially launched in 2016, aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in China's major urban centres. The cities of Chongqing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Yantai are currently mounting a major effort and the city of Kunming is about to join the project. Building on its experience in sustainable urban management, Switzerland is promoting the introduction of innovative climate protection technologies and methods and encouraging local authorities and stakeholders to work together. Within the SDC, the Global Programme Climate Change and Environment is coordinating efforts

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