China and the European Union (EU) are leading a Third Industrial
Revolution, paving the way to a sustainable economic era in the
21st century, a world renowned expert said in London on
"There are three essential pillars of the Third Industrial
Revolution which must be simultaneously developed and fully
integrated for any one of these components to fully realized its
potential and for the new economic paradigm to become operational:
renewable energy, storage technology, and smart power grids,"
Jereny Rifkin, adviser to EU and US governments and Fortune 500
companies, said at the CHINA NOW Sustainability Conference held
Looking to the future, every government will need to explore new
energy paths and establish new economic models with the goal of
achieving as close to zero carbon emissions as possible, said
Rifkin who is the author of 17 books on environmental, energy and
economic related issues.
The EU has begun the journey toward a Third Industrial
Revolution by making a binding commitment that 20 percent of all EU
energy be generated by renewable sources of energy of 2020 while
China pledged in its 11th Five-Year Plan to have renewable energy
rise to 15 percent in energy consumption by 2020.
The EU and China are both engaged in developing technologies to
store intermittent forms of renewable energy and creating
intelligent utility networks to allow distributed forms of
renewable energy, he said.
For the EU and China to lead, "cooperative partnership between
China and the EU is important", Rifkin said.
Sustainability and climate change in particular are key issues
across the globe and a prominent topic of discussion at the
conference, jointly hosted by CHINA NOW, which is organizing
Britain's largest ever festival of Chinese culture, and
international legal practice Norton Rose LLP.
The conference is one of CHINA NOW's more than 800 events across
Britain to celebrate China as a vibrant, dynamic and fast evolving
(Xinhua News Agency February 20, 2008)