Climate Group to help China's cities unlock opportunities

March 30, 2011
Tony Balir, the Climate Group
The Climate Group today announced its new landmark program, China Redesign, aimed at helping Chinese cities develop and implement low carbon growth strategies and meet the emissions reduction objectives of China's 12th Five Year Plan.

Specifically, the international NGO said the new program was aimed at helping Chinese cities build capacity to support the Chinese Government's emissions reduction target; bringing city governments, leading businesses, financial institutions and scientific experts together to work on 10 demonstration projects of practical low carbon solutions; and working with five cities to develop and implement a low carbon growth plan over the next three years, unlocking large economic opportunities.

Those cities participating in the program will co-operate with national and international low carbon technology suppliers, financial institutions and academic experts, to find solutions tailored to their different needs, the Climate Group said in a statement.

With an unprecedented urban growth rate, cities are seen as central to China's climate challenge. The responsibility for achieving the national energy intensity and emissions reduction targets set out in China's 12th Five Year Plan - 16 percent and 17 percent respectively - has been allocated to local governments. This brings challenges, but also enormous opportunities for Chinese cities and businesses.

Officiating the launch event in Beijing, former UK Prime Mister Tony Blair said: "The decisions made and actions taken by China now will shape the course of the 21st Century.

"As a nation, China has the opportunity to lead the world in the low carbon economy, but China's cities are where the foundations for green growth will be laid. China Redesign incorporates all of the ingredients required for success - technology, planning, finance - and The Climate Group is well placed to lead this effort."

Mark Kenber, CEO, The Climate Group, said: "The Climate Group has significant international experience in bringing regional governments and businesses together to collaborate on game-changing initiatives. China Redesign will help Chinese cities take the crucial leadership on climate change required. This is where the Clean Revolution will be won or lost."

Working in five cities, China Redesign aims to scale-up the use of key low-carbon technologies by facilitating a conversation between city decision makers, businesses and financiers so that effective policies and innovative financing models are created over the next three years. Ten demonstration projects will showcase holistic solutions in renewable energy, urban planning, sustainable transport, green building and construction, energy management, project finance and green industrialization.

The results of the three year program will be published in a manual and project toolkit, so that the strategies and projects can be replicated by further cities in China and other developing economies.

"The next five years are critical for China's development. We will explore integrated solutions that support low carbon urban growth through this platform.

"Our communications and outreach program will create momentum, inspiring even more low carbon urban infrastructure projects, and stimulating China's Clean Revolution," said Changhua Wu, Director of the Climate Group Greater China.

Several provincial and city partners have expressed interest in China Redesign, including, Guangdong Province, Guiyang City, Hangzhou City, Wuhan City, Chongqing City and Dezhou City. Supporting Partners include China Energy Conservation and Environmental Protection Group, Cisco, En+ Group, GE, Johnson Controls, New Cities Foundation and Philips.