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US mayors praise Chinese government after visit to Wuhan for climate change and sustainability exchange
Image via nataliegwinters / X / United States Heartland China Association (screenshot)

US mayors praise Chinese government after visit to Wuhan for climate change and sustainability exchange

Six mayors from the United States participated in an exchange with the Chinese government in which they traveled to take part in the U.S. Heartland China Association's Yangtze-Mississippi Municipality Energy Transition Exchange project.

The mayors who made the trip were Mayor Jim Brainard of Carmel, Indiana; Mayor Barbara Buffaloe of Columbia, Missouri; Mayor Lee Harris of Shelby County, Tennessee; Mayor Chokwe Lumumba from Jackson, Mississippi; Mayor Kim Norton of Rochester, Minnesota; and Mayor Robyn Tannehill of Oxford, Mississippi.

The exchange was officially part of an effort to promote best practices between communities along the two major rivers, particularly in regards to "energy transition, climate mitigation, and green economy."

The two sides discussed opportunities for possible collaboration and took a trip to Voyah Automobile, a Chinese-state owned luxury car manufacturer now specializing in electric vehicles. The cars are reportedly sold in Russia, Israel, Turkey, and Belarus, as well as China.

As reported by Natalie Winters, several of the mayors praised China's approach to green energy policies. Specifically, electric vehicle investments and alleged carbon-reducing infrastructure were Chinese policies that some of the mayors hoped to implement in the United States.

"We were talking about climate change," said Columbia, Missouri, Mayor Buffaloe. "I know that in order for us to solve climate change, or at least reduce the impacts it's having on our communities and make sure we have a planet for our future generations, that it's going to take us working on things like electrical vehicle transformation, renewable energy both production, as well as scale and supply."

Buffaloe went on to state that the "best practices" she learned in China should be implemented in American communities.

"It's about our communities learning from one another, sharing these best practices, and then implementing them in our own communities. We need all kinds of exchanges with China."

Shelby County, Tennessee, Mayor Harris praised Chinese investments surrounding carbon emissions.

"China is quickly making the right kinds of investments, and those are investments in infrastructure, that's investments in reducing carbon emissions, that's investments in new tech like electric vehicles, and we've got a lot of work to do."

Mayor Brainard of Carmel, Indiana, said that the work conducted alongside Chinese politicians should be implement worldwide.

"Collaboration between U.S. and Chinese mayors not only benefits the hundreds of millions of people living in our two countries, but the ongoing joint work will lead to best practices that can be applied around the world."

Brainard also signed a sister cities agreement between Carmel, Indiana, and Xiangyang, Hubei, China.

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