China proposes to reduce emissions by millions of tons over the
next 20 years in an effort to help reduce global warming through
Minister of Construction Wang
Guangtao said yesterday China will lessen its greenhouse
emissions by 846 million tons annually if all new buildings were
installed with energy-saving technologies.The construction sector
takes up nearly 40 per cent of China's total energy
By 2020, China's per capita living space will be double what it
is now, as 30 billion square metres of housing will have been
"If all of the national energy-saving standards have been fully
implemented by 2020, China will be greatly contributing towards
curbing global warming," said Wang.
At yesterday's opening ceremony of an international exhibition
and forum on green and smart buildings in Beijing, Wang did not
link the proposed emission cuts to the international cleaner
development mechanism (CDM) projects currently under the framework
of the UN's Kyoto Protocol.
Vice-Minister of Construction Qiu Baoxing said the potential
emission reduction could bring "many business opportunities" for
domestic real estate developers, who are allowed to trade the
reduced emission quota to developed countries.
Under CDM, developed countries can carry out emission-reduction
projects in developing countries through financial and technical
cooperation, and this would count towards their emission
Wang said China has already set "year-to-year targets" in its
national energy-saving campaign in real estate development.
By 2010, all new buildings should be 50 percent more energy
efficient than 2005 and 65 percent more efficient by 2020.
The government plans to save 20 percent of energy by 2010 on the
basis of 2005 consumption.
Peiyan yesterday said the campaign was crucial because the
country continued to face shortages of resources. "If we don't take
action now the situation will become worse," said Zeng.
To make the buildings more energy efficient, Qiu said
environmental impact evaluations would be carried out during
construction and when choosing what materials and machinery to
The exhibition included innovative ideas such as using solar
cookers in kitchens, setting-up smart wind power generators above
buildings and letting intelligent systems control heating or
Statistics show only 15 percent of China's new buildings since
2000 can be called environmentally friendly, and this may be due to
the extra cost associated with more environmentally friendly
"The extra cost is the major reason why the market is slow to
react to the campaign," said Zhang Jun, a Beijing-based real estate
To encourage the promotion of energy-saving buildings, Zhang
said the government should put in place an economic incentive
mechanism, for example, preferential tax reductions on such
(China Daily March 29, 2006)