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Asian Development Bank

50 climate solutions from cities in the People's Republic of China


Guangzhou has created an ambitious network of climateaction youth leaders to reshape the approach to climateaction in the next generation.

The China Youth Climate Action Network (CYCAN) is an active nongovernment organization born out of a desire to inspire and call to action the increasingly concerned and educated Chinese youth, who have been brought up with the worst air quality any generation has seen. The network, associated with the Climate Action Network, works to raise public awareness on climate change and transition to sustainable energy, while also engaging and inspiring youth communities in the PRC.


The network has a number of running projects, and is holding its ninth International Youth Summit on Energy and Climate Change, where thousands of students and young people gather to discuss how younger generations can better react to opportunities and challenges brought about by the green transition. Other projects include a low-carbon campus project, which aims to empower university students to take control of energy management on their campuses and cut emissions from universities.

Group of University Students on Campus
The youth networks seeks to inspire and guide green leaders of young generation to take the action on climate change (photo by Lie Wu).

The Challenge

The PRC is the world’s leading contributor of greenhouse gas emissions and has suœered from associated side eœects of burning fossil fuels, particularly in air quality. But, with an estimated army of 45 million college students, organizations like CYCAN can reshape tomorrow’s future with tomorrow’s generation.


Economic  Inspiring future entrepreneurs to focus their innovative eœorts on green and clean technology could have untold economic benefits for the world’s second largest economy.

Environment  Empowering a generation who have faced some of the worst environmental conditions ever is a potent accelerator of future change for the environment.

Social Providing a platform for environmentally conscious youth to engage in climate action can open their eyes to future careers influencing the PRC’s green transition.