California Governor Meets with President Xi of China, Signs Agreement to Boost Green Technology

BEIJING–Taking California’s climate push to the global stage, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today met with President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China and signed an agreement with China’s Minister of Science and Technology to deepen cooperation on the development of green technology.

Governor Brown meets with Chinese President Xi in Beijing (credit: Governor’s Office)

Governor Brown met with President Xi for approximately 45 minutes at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The Governor and President discussed the importance of expanding cooperation on green technology, innovation and trade.

“California is the leading economic state in America and we are also the pioneering state on clean technology, cap and trade, electric vehicles and batteries, but we can’t do it alone,” said Governor Brown during his meeting with President Xi. “I have proposed that California will cut its greenhouse gases 40 percent below 1990 levels and that we’ll have 50 percent of our electricity from renewables. To keep that goal, we need a very close partnership with China – with your businesses, with your provinces, with your universities.”

Governor Brown pointed to China’s work on a cap-and-trade program and solar energy growth in California as areas of mutual benefit. He also noted his long relationship with President Xi, including welcoming the President’s father to California during the Governor’s first stint, and meetings in 2012, 2013 and 2015.

President Xi highlighted the strong subnational relationship between California and Chinese provinces, including the Governor’s recent visits to Sichuan and Jiangsu provinces. Both leaders agreed to continue working to expand bilateral cooperation between California and China.

Earlier in the day, the Governor met with China’s Minister of Science and Technology, Wan Gang, and signed an agreement on behalf of California that builds on the subnational pacts signed earlier this week with Sichuan and Jiangsu provinces.

Specifically, the agreement expands cooperation on the advancement of low-carbon, renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies such as zero-emission vehicles, energy storage, grid modernization and low-carbon urban development. Under the agreement, California and China will also deepen their partnership and coordination on greenhouse gas emission and air pollution reduction programs, including emissions trading systems and carbon capture.

Later, Governor Brown spoke at a Clean Energy Ministerial forum focused on electric vehicles; met with Hebei Province’s Governor, Xu Qin; met with China’s Minister of Commerce, Zhong Shan; and spoke at a Clean Energy Ministerial event organized by the Energy Foundation on the economic transition to clean energy.

Tomorrow, Governor Brown will open the Under2 Clean Energy Forum, which he is cohosting with China’s Ministry of Science and Technology and Sichuan Province. This event expands on the Clean Energy Ministerial by bringing together members of the Under2 Coalition – leaders of cities, provinces and states around the world – as well as businesses and NGOs to drive subnational and non-state action to decarbonize the economy and curb climate change. The forum builds on the event Governor Brown launched last year in San Francisco during the Clean Energy Ministerial.