Governor Brown kicks off trip to China with California-Sichuan clean energy pact

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Governor Brown and Sichuan Governor Yin Li sign sister-state agreement.
Photo Credit: Yongsheng Fu

CHINA DAY 1

CHENGDU, China – Moving to expand California’s regional climate partnerships in China, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today met with top Sichuan Province officials in Chengdu and signed a new sister-state agreement focused on broadening cooperation on low-carbon technologies, environmental protection, and clean energy development.

“As I see many problems in the world – many tensions and disruptions – I also see the growing importance of partnerships such as the one we’re building with Sichuan and California,” said Governor Brown during today’s meeting. “Let’s get done as much as possible in the time that we have.”

The pact, signed today in Sichuan’s capital city by Governor Brown and Sichuan Governor Yin Li, aims to bolster clean technology innovation and financing in California and Sichuan through the establishment of the California-Sichuan Clean Tech Innovation Center in Chengdu’s Tianfu New Area and development of a California-China Clean Technology Partnership Fund. The agreement also provides incubator space and market access for California clean energy and technology companies in Sichuan.

This builds on the agreements California and Sichuan signed at the U.S.-China Governors Forum in Seattle in 2015 and existing trade, education, tourism and cultural exchanges will also be broadened under the new sister-state partnership.

Sichuan Province is located in the southwest of China and is the country’s fourth most populous province, with more than 80 million residents. It is known as a leading producer of clean energy in China.

Sichuan was the first Chinese Province to join the Under2 Coalition and will co-host the Under2 Clean Energy Forum later this week in Beijing with Governor Brown and China’s Ministry of Science and Technology. Governor Brown will also participate in events associated with the Clean Energy Ministerial, an annual meeting of national energy ministers and other high-level delegates from nearly two dozen countries.

The Under2 Clean Energy Forum 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. This forum builds on the event Governor Brown launched last year in San Francisco during the Clean Energy Ministerial.

The Under2 Coalition – an international pact among cities, states and countries committed to limiting the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius, the level of potentially catastrophic consequences – now includes 170 jurisdictions on six continents. These members collectively represent more than 1.18 billion people and $27.5 trillion GDP – equivalent to 16 percent of the global population and 37 percent of the global economy. Among the coalition members are 10 U.S. states and eight U.S. cities that together account for nearly one-third of America’s population and GDP.

Tomorrow, Governor Brown will meet with top officials in one of California’s other sister states, Jiangsu Province.

The Governor’s trip to China builds on significant diplomatic, environmental and business exchanges between California and China, including: a Trade and Investment Mission to China in 2013; first-of-its-kind climate agreements between California and China’s National Development and Reform Commission and China’s Ministry of Commerce; and meetings between Governor Brown and President Xi during his visit to Los Angeles as then-Vice President of China in 2012 and again as President in Indian Wells in 2013 and Seattle in 2015.

Governor Brown is accompanied on the trip by California Air Resources Board Chair Mary Nichols and California Energy Commission Chair Robert Weisenmiller.

Text of the agreement is copied below:

AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND SICHUAN PROVINCE OF THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA ON THE ESTABLISHMENT OF FRIENDSHIP PROVINCE/STATE RELATIONSHIP

The Government of the State of California of the United States of America, and the Sichuan Provincial People’s Government of the People’s Republic of China (hereinafter referred to as the “Both Parties”), following the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on Establishing a Friendly Cooperation Relationship Between the Sichuan Province of the People’s Republic of China and the State of California of the United States of America, on September 20th 2015 in Seattle, Washington State, promoted practical cooperation in the fields of trade, investment, science, education, smart cities, culture and tourism, as well as the establishment of the California Centre Chengdu which provides an important platform of economic and cultural exchange and cooperation, through the joint efforts of governments and business. On this basis, wishing to enhance mutual understanding and friendship between the American and Chinese peoples, and consolidate and develop friendly cooperation between the two sides, both parties have reached an agreement, through friendly consultations, on the establishment of the Friendship Province/State relationship.

I. Acting in accordance with the principles of the Joint Communiqué on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between the United States of America and the People’s Republic of China, as well as in accordance with the laws and regulations of both countries, both Parties agree to strengthen the friendly exchange and cooperation based on equality, mutual respect, mutual trust, and mutual benefit.

II. Both parties agree to maintain regular intergovernmental engagements through ongoing exchange of personnel, culture and ideas. Collaboration will be facilitated through the establishment of representative offices, which provide a platform for pursuing opportunities for collaboration and partnerships of mutual benefit, as well as the exchange of visits by government leaders through regular and effective communications on matters relating to the province/state relationship or of common interest.

III. Both Parties believe that Sichuan and California have complementary competitive advantages in the fields of information technology, bio-pharmaceuticals, clean energy, environmental protection, professional services, and international trade, and agree to promote and strengthen the cooperation in the above areas within the framework of the friendship province/state relations and establish a more sustainable cooperative economic relationship. Both Parties will promote business collaboration through:

1.Establishing a joint committee between lead chambers of commerce, to help facilitate and promote bilateral trade and investment activities;
2.Strengthening the cooperation in low carbon technologies, environmental protection and clean energy development through the establishment of the California-Sichuan Clean Energy Partnership;
3.Promoting cooperation between California and Sichuan on clean technology innovations and financing, through the establishment of the California-Sichuan Clean Tech Innovation Center in Chengdu Tianfu New Science City and participation in the development of the California-China Clean Technology Partnership Fund;
4.Utilizing the important role of private sector initiatives such as the California Center Chengdu;
5.Launching a Energy Internet Demonstrating Project in Sichuan with technical support from California.

Ⅳ. Both Parties agree that the existing cooperation in education, tourism, culture and public health is an important part of the friendly relationship between Sichuan and California. Both Parties agree to enhance the exchange and cooperation in the fields above so as to further promote mutual prosperity.

Ⅴ. Both Parties agree to encourage people-to-people exchanges, which will help to facilitate greater community engagement and understanding by sports exchanges, education exchanges and youth leadership dialogues.

Ⅵ. This Agreement shall come into force from the date of signature. It will be valid for five years. Upon expiration, it may remain in force if neither side terminates it.

Ⅶ. This Agreement, signed June 4th, 2017 in Chengdu, Sichuan, is done in duplicate in the Chinese and English languages, both texts being equally authentic.

Edmund G. Brown, Jr.
Governor
The State of California
The United States of America

Yin Li
Governor
Sichuan Province
The People’s Republic of China

Photo captions:

1.) Governor Brown meets with Sichuan Party Secretary Wang Dongming.
2.) Governor Brown and Sichuan Governor Yin Li sign sister-state agreement.

Photo Credit: Yongsheng Fu