China, Japan, SK push joint plan for environment

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-4-30 0:53:01

Environment ministers from China, South Korea and Japan on Tuesday discussed a coordinated response to common environmental challenges in Northeast Asia, stressing further strengthening of joint efforts to prevent and control air pollution.

The 16th Tripartite Environment Ministers' Meeting among China, South Korea and Japan (TEMM16) was held in Daegu in South Korea on Monday and Tuesday.

The meeting was attended by Chinese Vice-Environment Minister Li Ganjie, South Korean Environment Minister Yoon Seong-kyu and Japanese Environment Minister Ishihara Nobuteru.

The three ministers adopted and signed a joint communiqué at the meeting, reaffirming their willingness to enhance collaboration regarding a wide range of environmental challenges, including water pollution, marine litter, dust and sandstorms, chemical risks, climate change, and loss of biodiversity.

They also reiterated a commitment to cooperation for the success of the 12th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP12) to be held in Pyeongchang in October this year.

At the meeting, Li acknowledged that China faces tough environmental problems, adding that the central government has realized that reducing air pollution is a tough task that requires long-term hard work.

Li emphasized that China's new environmental protection laws, which have been revised for the first time in the past 25 years, are a major breakthrough in clarifying the responsibility of governments at all levels, strengthening environmental supervision and management, enlarging access to information and encouraging public participation.

But he warned that strict and continuing implementation was needed to make the law really work.

Yoon Seong-kyu, South Korea's environment minister, emphasized the urgent need to reduce air pollution in the Northeast Asian region while proposing "air quality improvement" as a priority area for future environmental cooperation among the three countries.

Yoon introduced South Korea's national policies to address trans-boundary air pollution including PM2.5, and suggested coordinated action among the three countries.

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