China’s Energy Organization GEI makes key committments at UN Environment Assembly

March 10, 2019 1:04 pm
GEI Action Plan for Promoting Global Environmental Protection is the third GEI action plan to be incorporated into important United Nations framework, following the CEI Action Plan to Promote the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the GEI Action Plan for Promoting the Implementation of the Paris Agreement. Photo/GEIDCO.

, NAIROBI, Kenya Mar 10 – Global Energy Interconnection (GEI)—a Chinese energy organization has made key commitments which it says ‘paves a new path for global environment and ecological conservation from the perspective of clean and sustainable development of energy’.

In a statement the organization better known as GEI, sad it seeks to ensure that everyone may have access to clean, safe, cheap and efficient energy, and to establish a new pattern of harmonious development of human and nature, and human and the environment.

GEI, an innovative solution and an effective platform to deal with environmental challenges and systematically solve global environmental problems, devotes its wisdom and strength to the realization of sustainable production and consumption of global energy.

“The environmental value of GEI lies in, by using clean alternatives, reducing pollution emissions caused by fossil energy and controlling temperature rise, promoting rational utilization and comprehensive protection of natural resources through electricity substitution, and facilitating overall development and global allocation of energy resources by interconnection,” it said at the United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA), taking place in Kenya capital, Nairobi.

GEI Action Plan for Promoting Global Environmental Protection is the third GEI action plan to be incorporated into important United Nations framework, following the CEI Action Plan to Promote the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the GEI Action Plan for Promoting the Implementation of the Paris Agreement.

On March 9, the GEI Action Plan for Promoting Global Environmental Protection, an innovative environmental solution, was released at the fourth session of the UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya, marking the integration of GEI into the framework of United Nations environmental management.

The Plan paves a new path for global environment and ecological conservation from the perspective of clean and sustainable energy development.

Global Energy Interconnection (GEI), a major initiative proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping at United Nations Sustainable Development Summit on Sept 26, 2015, opened up new ground to promote global resource transition and address global environmental issues.

Photo/GEIDCO.

During this Assembly, the Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization (GEIDCO), an international organization based in China, globally released the research report in response to the major global issue of environmental protection.

Such efforts provide innovative solutions and effective platform for meeting environmental challenges and solving global environmental problems, and contribute wisdom and strength to achieving sustainable energy production and consumption in the world.

Liu Zhenya, chairman of GEIDCO, pointed out at the opening ceremony of the Science-Policy-Business Forum of the Assembly that the current global environment is challenged by nine major issues characterized by “four types of deterioration”, “three types of pollution” and “two types of shortages”, specifically, climate change, deforestation, land desertification, deterioration of biodiversity, air pollution, marine pollution, solid waste pollution, depletion of fresh water and food shortage.

To address these issues, we must focus on energy, the key to these issues, to accelerate green and low-carbon development.

Liu Zhenya said that GEI is an energy infrastructure platform for the large-scale development, delivery and use of clean energy resources worldwide. GEI, in essence the “Smart Grid + UHV Grid + Clean Energy”, will accelerate clean replacement in energy development and electricity replacement in energy consumption, raise energy efficiency and boost electrification, and restore fossil energy to its basic attribute. The development of GEI will bring about fundamental change to the pattern of global environmental governance.

It will facilitate climate change efforts, mitigate air pollution, and enhance the ecological environment in all aspects. Such efforts are made to promote the global carbon emissions to peak around 2025, and drop to less than half of the emission level in 1990 by 2050; by 2050, the global emissions of sulfur dioxide, nitric oxide and inhalable particles are expected to dip by about 70%; about 110 billion cubic meters of water used for power generation will be saved annually; we will also see dramatic cuts of the emission of solid waste and marine pollutants linked with the production, allocation and use of fossil energy; food shortage, land desertification, deforestation, and the deterioration of biodiversity will be effectively brought under control.

GEI will enable the coordinated development of energy and environment and harmonious co-existence of mankind and nature.

As put in the GEI Action Plan for Promoting Global Environmental Protection, we set out to act on eight actions through GEI, namely the dissemination of concepts, mechanism building, clean development, grid interconnection, universal power access, electricity replacement, energy efficiency and ecological restoration to address global environmental issues.

According to the document, the unreasonable development and utilization of energy is the key factor causing global environmental issues. Compared with the large-scale development and utilization of fossil energy, GEI is a comprehensive optimization scheme to ensure safe supply of energy, solve the ecological environment issues, and minimize environmental cost. It is a win-win path that is resource-saving and environment-friendly to achieve economic development and environmental protection.

The document describes the value and role of GEI in protecting the earth’s ecological environment, that is, to reduce the emissions of fossil energy pollution and control temperature rise, and reduce that of greenhouse gases and waste gases, wastewater and waste residues from the development and utilization of fossil energy through clean replacement; to promote the rational use and comprehensive protection of natural resources by taking advantage of electricity replacement, and to make energy consumption structure in civil, industrial, commercial, construction and other fields mainly based on electricity, for saving and protecting water resources, land resources and forest resources; and to promote the overall development and global allocation of energy resources through interconnection, so as to realize the long-distance and large-scale optimal allocation of clean energy resources.

The United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) is the world’s highest-level environmental forum. Participants including heads of state, ministers of environment, CEOs of transnational corporations, non-governmental organizations and environmental activists will be gathered to discuss important environmental issues and make global environmental commitments.

The UNEA of this session is themed “Developing Innovative Solutions to Environmental Challenges for Sustainable Consumption and Production”. María Fernanda Espinosa, President of the UN General Assembly, Siim Kiisler, President of the UN Environment Assembly and Inger Anderson, the new Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme attended the opening ceremony of the Science-Policy-Business Forum of the Assembly held on March 9 and delivered opening speeches.

GEIDCO is committed to developing green and low-carbon energy and building an international platform for mutual discussion, co-construction, sharing and win-win cooperation. Currently, it has 602 members covering 85 countries (regions).

In 2017 and 2018, respectively, GEIDCO launched the GEI Action Plan to Promote the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the GEI Action Plan for Promoting the Implementation of the Paris Agreement, aligned with the key frameworks of the United Nations.

During this session of UNEA, GEIDCO cooperated with UNEP to share its work results and experience in many forums and related activities, seeking to accelerate the low-carbon and green development of the globe and make the world a better place to live.

During this session of UNEA, GEIDCO cooperated with UNEP to share its work results and experience in many forums and related activities, seeking to accelerate the low-carbon and green development of the globe and make the world a better place to live.

The unreasonable development and utilization of energy is the key factor causing global environmental problems. Fossil energy generates large amounts of exhaust, sewage and residue in such links as development, processing, transportation and utilization, creating the nine environmental problems related to air, soil and water.
We should accelerate the construction of GEI, and promote the “three transformations” in energy development, namely the transformation from fossil fuels to clean alternatives in energy production, the transformation from local balance to transnational, transcontinental and wide-area deployment in energy allocation, and the transformation from coal, oil and gas to electricity in energy consumption.

Three environmental values of GEI: “Clean Replacement” (replacing fossil fuels with clean alternatives in energy production) greatly reduces environmental pollution and climate change caused by the development and utilization of fossil energy. “Electricity Replacement” (replacing coal, oil and gas by clean electricity in energy consumption) achieves the electricity-based energy consumption structure, promoting the sustainable use of natural resources.
“Interconnection” promotes the overall development and global allocation of energy resources, prevents the unreasonable development and utilization of energy resources in ecologically vulnerable areas, and greatly reduces the damage to the ecological environment.

The building of GEI is a practical solution to major global environmental problems.

We should accelerate the use of low-carbon energy to address climate change. “Clean Replacement” and “Electricity Replacement” will reduce the carbon dioxide emissions in the global energy system by 58% and 22%, respectively. The carbon dioxide emissions in the global energy system will reach the peak around 2025 and decrease rapidly, and will be reduced by more than half in 2050 compared with emissions in 1990.

Photo/GEIDCO.

We should eliminate fossil energy emissions and control air pollution in an all-round manner. In 2050, under the GEI scenarios, 120 million tons of sulphur dioxide, 190 million tons of nitrogen oxides, and 39 million tons of fine particulate matter will be reduced. In total, “Clean Replacement” and “Electricity Replacement” will reduce sulfur dioxide by 64%, nitrogen oxides by 47%, and fine particulate matter by 52%.

We should develop clean energy bases and promote decertified land management. We should create a new model of “energy development + desert control”. Assuming that half of the power demands in the world are to be met by photovoltaic power generation in 2050, we need to build about 1,500 10GW-level photovoltaic power generation bases, which are expected to occupy decertified land of nearly one million m2.

We should coordinate the utilization of clean energy to alleviate the crisis in freshwater resources. By reducing the water consumption in power generation with fossil fuels, more than 110 billion m3 of water can be saved every year by 2050.

Eight actions of GEI in promoting global management

Concept spreading: Establish the development concept of driving global environment management with the sustainable development of global energy, and deepen theoretical and technological innovation and research to form a representative and propagable environmental management program and incorporate into the policy system of economic and social development.

Mechanism building: Take GEI as the link coordinating global energy management and environmental management, and integrate the goals, paths and mechanisms of global energy management and environmental management to provide reference and basis for the construction of conventions, laws and regulations and policies related to global environment.
Clean development: Coordinate the development and utilization of all kinds of clean energy on all continents and vigorously use clean alternatives to reduce the use of fossil fuels, so as to control energy emissions from the source in a comprehensive manner.
Power grid interconnection: Accelerate trans-national, trans-regional, and trans-continental UHV grid interconnection, make full use of the differences of resource, time zone, season and electricity price, promote large-scale, long-distance, economic and efficient transmission of clean energy, coordinate the use of environmental capacity, and enhance environmental carrying capacity.

Electricity access: Urge governments to formulate and implement plans, policies and action plans to increase electricity access, seek financial, consultation, technical and other services and program assistance, develop electricity-centered energy production and consumption patterns, and reduce the use of biomass energy and emission of inhalable particles in less developed regions.

Electricity replacement: vigorously improve domestic power consumption of residents, promote the development of electrified transportation, accelerate the proportion of power consumption in the industrial sector, gradually recover the nature of fossil energy as raw materials, and control the emission of pollutants in various fields of energy consumption ends.

Energy efficiency improvement: Improve energy efficiency standards and management level around energy production, allocation and consumption, with focus on the innovation and application of energy-saving technologies, improve supporting policies and funding mechanisms, and enhance the efficiency and cleanliness of energy use.
Ecological restoration: Implement basin ecological restoration projects, clean treatment demonstration projects, clean energy desertification control actions in desert areas, and seawater desalination actions in coastal water-deficient areas, so as to achieve synergy of clean energy development and utilization, regional environmental management and ecological restoration.

II. Global Energy Interconnection Action Plan to Promote the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
On November 1, 2017, GEIDCO and the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDES) co-hosted a high-level symposium and a luncheon at the UN Headquarters in New York, the US, to launch the Global Energy Interconnection Action Plan to Promote the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, formally incorporating GEI into the framework of the UN Agenda 2030. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that GEI is the core of human sustainable development and the key to inclusive global growth, and that all governments should be urged to step up action for the transformation of the global energy system.

III. Global Energy Interconnection Action Plan for Promoting the Implementation of the Paris Agreement
On December 10, 2018, during the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 24) in Katowice, Poland, GEIDCO and the UNFCCC Secretariat co-hosted an event themed “Building Global Energy Interconnection, Promoting the Implementation of Paris Agreement” and released the Global Energy Interconnection Action Plan for Promoting the Implementation of the Paris Agreement, formally incorporating GEI into the framework of the UN in promoting the Paris Agreement. Ovais Sarmad, Deputy Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, said that the building of GEI is totally in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement, and it is an excellent tool for achieving these goals.

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