With a commitment to expanded environmental cooperation, U.S. EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson signed a trilateral Statement of Cooperation with the Chinese State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Beijing. This agreement will support the development of cap and trade mechanisms, the use of economic and market tools to address environmental issues and the strengthening of SEPA’s regional infrastructure.
“The U.S., China and the Asian Development Bank are committed to promoting good environmental policies that can lead to positive economic results,” Johnson said. “U.S. history shows that we can protect the environment while promoting economic growth. This formalized partnership to collaborate will encourage environmental gain for China.”
China’s rapid economic growth and urbanization have placed pressures on its environment. Large-scale investments will be necessary to improve air quality in major cities and towns, treat wastewater discharged into rivers and lakes, and provide safe drinking water supplies. This trilateral collaboration leverages EPA resources and expertise to help China address environmental challenges.
EPA and ADB currently have technical cooperation programs in China. In 2005, ADB approved about $1.5 billion in loans and $18.5 million in technical assistance to China. In December 2003, EPA and SEPA signed a Memorandum of Understanding that included annexes on Air Pollution, Water Pollution, and Pollution from Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) and other Toxic Substances. A fourth annex on Hazardous and Solid Waste was added during Johnson’s first visit to China in April 2006.