Officials, experts say Xi's speech at COP15 injects confidence into promoting development of global ecological civilization

(Xinhua) 09:02, October 14, 2021

BEIJING, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) -- Officials and experts worldwide have spoken highly of Chinese President Xi Jinping's speech on Tuesday at the leaders' summit of the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, known as COP15, via video link in Beijing.

Xi's calls in his speech for pooling strength to build a community of all life on Earth and joining forces and starting a new journey of high-quality development of humanity have injected confidence into promoting the development of global ecological civilization, they said.

Hussain S. Alshammari, director of the International Reporters Department at Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Media, said the COP15 is being held at just the right time.

Xi's calls for joint efforts for humanity's high-quality development are in sync with Saudi Arabia's initiatives of "Green Middle East" and "Green Saudi Arabia," he said.

Building a community of all life on Earth "should be the common goal of mankind and the key to maintaining harmony among human beings and nature, and sustainable development, which requires the unremitting efforts of every country," he added.

"President Xi is saying that we need to protect that (ecological) civilization as much as anything else. We cannot just build motorways and new towns. We need to produce a balance with nature. I think it is a great value to the world," said Stephen Perry, chairman of Britain's 48 Group Club.

Zhou Weisheng, a professor at Ritsumeikan University and director of the Research Institute of Global 3E in Japan, said "Sustainable development can be achieved only when human society coexists in harmony with nature, while developed and developing countries cooperate to draw on each other's strengths."

Cavince Adhere, a Kenya-based international relations scholar, said Xi's speech has "set the tone on the needed actions to pull back from the brink of ecological disaster brought about by global warming."

"Protecting biodiversity through international cooperation is the first call of action. To create more livable spaces, there is a need to (create a) balance between human activities and the needs of the environment. Development must be operationalized within the confines of ecological sustainability," Adhere said.

French writer and sinologist Lea Bessis said that the world can see China's determination on ecological environment through Xi's speech, for example, with the announcement of China's initiative to establish a biodiversity fund and take the lead by investing 1.5 billion yuan (233 million U.S. dollars) to support biodiversity protection in developing countries, and another announcement that China is moving faster to establish a protected areas system with national parks as the mainstay.

"China will thus serve as an example," Bessis said.

Economic development does not have to be at the expense of nature, and "healthy ecosystem and national parks can be a very important part of a national and local economy," said Brendan Mackey, director of the Climate Action Beacon at Griffith University in Australia's Queensland. 

(Web editor: Xia Peiyao, Liang Jun)


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