GUANGZHOU, China – As the pollution blanketed this southern city like a thick, toxic fog, California’s environmental protection secretary signed an accord with his counterpart in China’s most populous province to “help each achieve its low-carbon development goals.”
With Gov. Jerry Brown looking on, California EPA Secretary Matt Rodriquez signed the accord Monday along with Li Chunhong, director general of the Guangdong Development and Reform Commission, vowing to work with local Chinese officials on cutting pollution.
The environment has been a centerpiece of Brown’s week in China. And as the trip winds down, Monday’s event caps what Brown hopes will be a relationship that will yield tangible results in the fight to protect the environment.
A partnership with this southern province, China’s manufacturing hub and most populous province with more than 109 million people, seems a natural fit for California. Guangdong is also at the forefront of China’s environmental efforts as one of two provinces, along with Chonqing, where Chinese officials are experimenting with ways to reduce carbon emissions.