The historic deal between the US and China promises to set the most ambitious carbon reduction standards for ever in the world’s two top green house gas emitters. In Beijing, it’s all about keeping the economy up and public discontent down. Jennifer Turner, CEF director was interviewed by KCRW radio program for To the Point.

“It is a big deal,” said Turner, when being asked the significance of the new deal. She said she was pleased but not surprised by the newly made agreement since both governmental and non-governmental sectors in these two countries have made efforts to get together for carbon emissions reduction in the last two decades.

Turner believed the severe pollution in China is a major reason for China to make the deal. “They are choking on their success. The air pollution problem is a catalyst for changing in China,” said Turner. “Five years ago, I would have chuckled if you told me that Chinese government would talk seriously about coal cap, peaking coal. The pollution has been so severe, that it is hitting its economy – 1.2 million people die early every year from respiratory illness in China. A recent study said at least half of them are because of coal.”

Turner showed confidence in China’s ability to honor the climate change commitment, because of the intensive investment in renewables. “About four year ago, they became the number one investor in clean energy… in the next couple of years, I think we are going to see that China really pushing forward more like on de-concentrated solar, having more renewable energy on the source,” said Turner.

Please find the news clip here

  • CEF Director Jennifer Turner was interviewed by KCRW (8:30- 15:28)