Qin Dahe, an academic with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, won the Volvo Environment Prize for 2013 on Monday for his cryospheric science and global climate change research.
The cryosphere is one of the main components of the Earth's climate system, comprising snow, river and lake ice, sea ice, glaciers, ice shelves and frozen ground.
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said Qin's work has made outstanding contributions to the scientific understanding of the climate, both in China and worldwide. The prize is worth $209,000.
A ceremony will be held in Stockholm, the Swedish capital, on Nov 26.
The prize has been awarded annually to those who have made outstanding scientific discoveries in the environmental and sustainability fields since 1990. Over the past two decades, it has gone to 39 people, including three Nobel Prize winners.
"The prize is praise for my past work, and as a scientist I will further improve my previous research," Qin said, adding that more Chinese scientists are playing an important role in international research.
Qin has been involved in the preparation of assessment reports for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), under the United Nations, since 1998.
He has witnessed the rapid increase in Chinese climate scientists and their involvement in international studies.
He said most of these scientists are 30 to 50 years old and will make a great contribution to the country's climate change studies and also studies at global level.
As co-chair of a working group on the IPCC's fourth assessment report (2002-08), Qin successfully organized the panel's scientific assessment activities.
He strongly supported and recommended that scientists, including young scientists, from developing countries take part in contributing to the panel's assessment report.
"I am old and I hope our young scientists can take part more in international research and studies," Qin said.
Besides decades of outstanding cryospheric science and global climate change research, Qin has made important contributions to international meteorological development.
In May, he was elected to the Scientific Committee of Future Earth under the International Council for Science, an international non-governmental organization formed in 1931 and devoted to international cooperation in the advancement of science.
Qin is a well-known glaciologist and climatologist and an academic with the World Academy of Sciences.
He is also former director of the China Meteorological Administration and a former permanent representative with the World Meteorological Organization. (ecns)