This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

July 29, 2009

United States and China to Cooperate on Climate Change and Energy

The United States and China signed an agreement on July 28 to enhance cooperation between the two countries on climate change, energy, and the environment. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) elevates climate change in the relationship between the two countries, committing them both to reaching a successful international agreement that addresses the problem. The MOU also expands cooperation between the two countries to accelerate the transition to a sustainable, low-carbon global economy. Specifically, it lays the foundation for expanded cooperation in combating climate change and developing and promoting energy efficiency, renewable energy, smart grid technologies, electric vehicles, and other energy technologies. Under the MOU, the United States and China will establish an ongoing dialogue on what they are doing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to advance international climate negotiations in preparation for the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen this December. The MOU was one of the results of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, which was held in Washington, D.C., on Monday and Tuesday.

"Both of our countries understand the importance of clean energy for our economies and for our security," remarked Energy Secretary Steven Chu at the signing ceremony. "Both of us understand the imperative of fighting climate change. What the U.S. and China do in the coming decades will help shape the fate of the world. I'm heartened by the progress we are making. Under President Obama's leadership, the United States has invested billions of dollars in clean energy and has taken bold steps to improve fuel efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from our vehicles.

"In recent years, China has taken impressive steps to improve energy efficiency, deploy renewable energy, and invest in clean energy technologies. Both our countries, however, must do more. And that's why today's agreement is so important. Today's agreement should send a clear signal that the United States and China are ready to work together on clean energy and climate change. It sets the stage for what I hope will be many years of close cooperation." See the MOU, the remarks at the signing ceremony, and the joint press release on the first round of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue.