Xi Jinping Takes Inspiration from Classic Text in Call for Greater Harmony between Humans, Nature
BEIJING, May 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — A report from CCTV+:
Chinese President Xi Jinping has on many occasions stressed the need for greater efforts to protect the ecological environment, with Xi taking his inspiration from classic works and looking to promote the shift towards a greener, low-carbon lifestyle to ensure harmony between humans and nature.
Xi quoted from the ancient Chinese classical text ‘Zi Zhi Tong Jian’, or ‘Comprehensive Mirror in Aid of Governance’, first published almost a millennium ago, in a speech delivered at the opening of the Beijing Horticultural Expo back in April 2019.
During this speech, Xi acknowledged that: “industrialization, while generating unprecedented material wealth, has incurred serious damage to Mother Nature.”
These remarks came against the backdrop of growing concern over the effects of climate change, as well as worries that fossil fuels could soon run out if humans continue to burn at the current rate, while key resources such as land, water and energy are all becoming more limited.
“‘Well-measured use of natural resources’ is the key to ecological conservation,” Xi told the expo.
“We need to promote a simpler, greener, and low-carbon lifestyle, oppose excessiveness and wastefulness, and foster a culture of living green and healthy,” the president said.
“Looking up at night, we are awed by the many stars in the sky. Planet Earth is the only home for mankind. We must protect this planet like our own eyes, and cherish nature the way we cherish life,” Xi said.
China’s latest five-year plan also paves the way for its promise of peaking carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality by 2060. The 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) vows to lower energy consumption per unit of gross domestic product (GDP) and carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 13.5 percent and 18 percent, respectively, during the next five-year period.
In the past 10 years, China has ranked first globally in terms of the increase in forest resources, with its afforestation area exceeding 70 million hectares. Meanwhile, 90 percent of terrestrial ecosystem types and 85 percent of key wild animal populations are under effective state protection. China has also pledged to increase the forest stock volume by six billion cubic meters by 2030 from the 2005 level and bring its total installed capacity of wind and solar power to over 1.2 billion kilowatts.