Responding to the Global Challenge of Climate Change -- Hong Kong and "One Country Two Systems"

Zhao Yuhong
March 2011
Carbon & Climate Law Review;2011, Vol. 5 Issue 1, p70
The historical and political context of the change of sovereignty in 1997 has determined Hong Kong's unique response to the global challenge of climate change. As a Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China under the principle of "One Country Two Systems," Hong Kong not only has the obligation to mitigate Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions in response to China's evolving climate change policies from Rio to Copenhagen, but also enjoys special privileges and potential advantages as a result of enhanced cross-border cooperation with Mainland China in areas of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects, carbon trade and clean energy supply. Both the international climate change regime and national policies have created great opportunities for Hong Kong to take the lead in the transformation to low-carbon society and make a substantial contribution to achieving the national target of 40-45 percent cut in carbon intensity by 2020 compared to the 2005 level. Where there is a will there is a way. What Hong Kong needs is the political will to do the right thing.


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