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China – Workshop on Resilient Cities in Guangyuan, Sichuan

On behalf of the IUC project, the Institute of Urban and Environmental Studies (IUE) of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) organised a work meeting on urban climate resilience in Guangyuan, Sichuan Province, on 17-18 December 2019. After seriously hit by the Sichuan earthquake in 2008, this city has turned its way to a green low carbon development with national financial support on recovery and reconstruction. In the past few years, Guangyuan has been selected as a national pilot city on building a low carbon and climate-resilient city. Experts from the IUE of the CASS were invited as consultants to give technical support on strategic planning for Guangyuan. They were supported by experts from the IUC Asia project who introduced the experiences and examples from European cities.

On 17 December 2019, a preparatory meeting was held between IUE experts and officials from the Guangyaun Municipal Low Carbon Bureau and the Municipal Ecology and Environment Bureau, both coordinating the pilot low-carbon city and climate-resilient city measures in Guangyuan respectively. IUE experts discussed several matching examples of cities from EU states based on Guangyuan contexts and requirements.

On the morning of 18 December 2019, the workshop focused on building implementing the “Ecological Civilization” and “Low-Carbon-Resilient City” approaches in Guangyuan. Presentations included China’s transformation to low-carbon green development and ecological civilization, progress in Guangyuan building pilot cities on a low-carbon and climate-resilient city, the EU’s support to cities’ resilience through the IUC and the Global Covenant of Mayors (GCoM). More than 30 participants attended the meeting, including agencies’ representatives from municipal, district and county levels of Guangyuan. The participants were very interested in the EU experiences shared, including the functioning of the EU Covenant of Mayors, the adaptation strategy of Copenhagen, the energy management coaching scheme from Ghent, and the practical experiences from Lisbon with green corridors and low emission zones.

On the afternoon of 18 December 2019, a participatory urban planning workshop for building a low-carbon-resilient city in Guangyuan was successfully held. The CASS experts worked with more than 20 representatives of the relevant agencies to identify the major climatic hazards, vulnerable sectors, ensure policy synergies, and implement measures in key sectors like transport and energy. Experts also assessed the strengths and weaknesses of Guangyuan’s low-carbon-resilient strategy. The outcome will contribute to revise and renew the relevant action plans in Guangyuan. The innovative participatory techniques in decision making made the workshop very fruitful and relevant to all the participants of Guangyuan agencies.

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