China: UNDP engages youth on low-carbon lifestyle for a greener future

17 Oct 2010

Shanghai — “Climate change will be a challenge to achieving the Millennium Development Goals, but it can also be an incredible opportunity for countries such as China to leapfrog old technologies and lead the world in embracing a new low-carbon future,” said Mr. Subinay Nandy, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Country Director for China, welcoming an audience of over 600 at the Shanghai International Convention Center today.

Coinciding with the visit of UNDP Administrator Helen Clark to the ongoing Shanghai Expo, the event, “China’s Low Carbon Future: A Dialogue on Green City and Green Life,” drew an audience of volunteers and students and was designed to raise awareness and start an interactive conversation about low-carbon living, particularly among young people. It was jointly organized by UNDP China and Jiefang Daily Group, one of China’s major media companies.

With the 2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDG) deadline just five years away, Helen Clark said “China has made impressive progress in economic and social development and has met many of the MDGs, while being well on the way to achieving others. UNDP is proud to work with China in its efforts to reach the MDGs as well as in the climate change area and on low-carbon development.”

This idea was taken further by the chief author of the 2010 China Human Development Report, Zou Ji, who predicted that the migration of nearly 400 million rural Chinese into urban areas over the next two decades could have a major influence on greenhouse gas emissions. At the same time, he said, it presents China with the opportunity to build new low-carbon cities from scratch, while other countries will have to retroactively adapt existing cities at great expense.

During the event, UNDP launched a unique comic book focused on low-carbon lifestyles through OUR PART, an environmental awareness initiative by UNDP China and Zhou Xun, UNDP’s national goodwill ambassador. Zhou Xun, who was instrumental in designing and promoting the book, said: “I am honoured and extremely proud to be a part of the Green Life comic book. Climate change is a very serious issue, but I feel we have been able to promote it by making it understandable and enjoyable.”

To conclude the program, Helen Clark, Zhou Xun and Subinay Nandy, alongside two primary-school students, helped design the book cover in front of the audience. This book is China’s first bilingual cartoon on the subject of low carbon and will soon be published and distributed in primary and middle schools around the country.

Keynote address by Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator

Contact Information

Ms. Zhang Wei
Communications Officer
UNDP China
Tel: (86-10) 8532 0715
Email: (电子邮件) wei.zhang@undp.org
Website (网址): www.undp.org.cn