Remarks by Ms Beate Trankmann at the 2024 Beijing CBD Forum

June 5, 2024

UNDP Resident Representative in China, Beate Trankmann, delivered remarks at the opening ceremony of the 2024 Beijing CBD Conference Forum and the First Beijing CBD Multinational Corporations Conference.


我非常荣幸代表UNDP参加今天的北京CBD 论坛 与各位探讨关于全球气候合作及中国绿色发展机遇的议题

(On behalf of UNDP in China, it is a pleasure to be here today at the Beijing Central Business District (CBD) Forum and speak to you about global climate cooperation and green development opportunities in China)

Climate change is no longer a distant threat but a stark reality. Globally, it’s estimated that by 2040, over 130 million people could be pushed into extreme poverty by climate change.

Asia and the Pacific is the most vulnerable region to climate change.[i] 91 percent of all people affected by severe flooding in the past 23 years globally, live in our region, causing economic losses of 452 billion dollars.[ii]

The transition towards a low carbon future has been gaining momentum and China is making important contributions to climate action by leading investments and innovation in green sectors such as renewable energy and e-mobility.

At the same time, coal reliance poses risks to the speed of transformation towards China’s dual carbon goals. Last year, roughly two-thirds of new coal plants coming online globally were established in China[1]. This points to the challenging balancing act between climate commitments, energy security and socio-economic considerations.

In light of the complexity of inclusive, low-carbon development pathways, which require an integrated whole of society transformation, no country or region, however large and capable, will be able to do it alone.

Strengthened global cooperation for more ambitious and accelerated actions is required to meet the targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and China’s national development agenda.

Multilateral partnerships are at the heart of the United Nations' efforts to realize the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

The 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, as the first binding agreement to combat climate change by all countries, is a powerful example of the international community coming together with a common purpose and a collective vision.

However, achieving this vision and transforming it into reality requires more than just commitments. It requires concrete actions, innovative solutions, and continued efforts from all sectors of society.

To this point, the updated Nationally Determined Contributions to be submitted by all countries by 2025 are a critical tool to raise ambitions backed by actionable plans to keep the Paris 1.5 degree target alive.

At UNDP, we are working to support countries to design the next generation of NDCs. Critical innovations should go beyond merely focusing on climate to incorporating biodiversity considerations with intact nature and ecosystems acting as powerful carbon sinks.

Bringing together climate and nature into inclusive transitions would turn climate actions into powerful systemic solutions – addressing the three dimensions of sustainable development - economic, social and environmental - in a comprehensive approach.

To deliver on this vision, UNDP is working with different stakeholders, like the ones gathered here today, to drive climate action and ensure whole-of- society engagement. Indeed, municipalities and businesses are both drivers of climate change and directly impacted by it. As such, they can be powerful agents of change.

"With now less than 6 years remaining to achieve the SDGs, our window to ensure a sustainable future is rapidly closing. However, with political will, financial investment, a commitment to long-term planning, and strong partnerships, we can still avert climate catastrophe and safeguard both people and planet."

Cities - responsible for 70 percent of global CO2 emissions[2] - face a greater burden of higher temperatures than rural areas, with severe impacts on infrastructure, services, health, and livelihoods. UNDP is collaborating with governments and other stakeholders in 55 countries to enhance climate action at the urban and local levels[3] - on a variety of issues, including green energy, mobility, building climate-resilient urban infrastructure, waste management and circular economy.

The private sector, a key engine of jobs and innovation, can play a crucial role. Businesses have the power to drive innovation, scale up sustainable solutions, and mobilize significant financial resources. By integrating sustainability into their core strategies, companies can reduce their carbon footprints, enhance their competitiveness, and contribute to the global effort to combat climate change. Public-private partnerships are essential for leveraging the strengths of both sectors and accelerating the transition to a green economy.

At UNDP, we stand ready to support all stakeholders to advance the SDGs fostering global green governance through innovation and collaboration.

As such, I am thrilled to announce that UNDP, together with the China International Center for Economic and Technical Exchange (CICETE), will establish a strategic partnership with the Beijing CBD to jointly advance our shared goals of sustainability and green development.

Beijing, as China’s capital, and an international metropolis and financial hub, can play a pivotal role in demonstrating leadership in the green transformation. We welcome the opportunity to partner and promote two-way exchanges and sharing best practices, as well as piloting innovative solutions to address climate change in the urban environment.

In closing, I would express my gratitude to the Beijing Central Business District for their commitment to sustainable development and for inviting me to speak today.

With now less than 6 years remaining to achieve the SDGs, our window to ensure a sustainable future is rapidly closing. However, with political will, financial investment, a commitment to long-term planning, and strong partnerships, we can still avert climate catastrophe and safeguard both people and planet.

Together, let us create a model example of urban sustainability that inspires cities around the world to take bold action for a greener and more climate-resilient future.

Thank you all for your attention and support.

[1] Global Energy Monitor, available at
[2]  (IPCC, 2022)
[i] Asian Development bank Institute (2012), Climate Change in Asia and the Pacific: How can Countries Adapt? Available at:
[ii] People and Planet: Addressing the Interlinked Challenges of Climate Change, Poverty and Hunger in Asia and the Pacific | United Nations Development Programme (