“China Development Forum 2014–Green Event” Held in Beijing
“China Development Forum 2014 – Green Event” was held on March 21, 2014 in Beijing. The Development Forum, sponsored by the Development Research Center of the State Council and organized by the China Development Research Foundation, is one of the most influential annual forums in China. It is an important platform for open interchange and dialogue between the Chinese government, the global business elite, leaders of international organizations, and foreign and domestic experts. This is the first year the Development Forum organized the Green Event. The theme was Embracing Green Wealth. The forum discussed the formation of green growth incentive mechanism and the national and international practical experiences. The Green Event was supported by Energy Foundation China.
Liu Shijin, Deputy Director of the Development Research Center of the State Council, and Professor Howard Ramsey, Director of the Global Green Growth Institute, made keynote speeches at the forum. Professor Carlo Jaege, Chairman of the Global Climate Forum, Dr. Zhang Yongsheng, Deputy Head of the Development Department of Development Research Center of the State Council, Tang Jie, Vice Mayor of Shenzhen, Jeremy Oppenheim, Director of New Climate Economy Project, as well as many other leading foreign and domestic authorities on green growth theory and practice made speeches at the forum. Dr. Wang Jiansheng, President of Energy Foundation China, made a speech on the key role of green policy in green wealth formation.
Liu Shijin pointed out in his speech that, “Green growth does not mean burdens, but rather advantages and opportunities. Green growth brings about clean air, the benefits of being able to enjoy beautiful natural scenery, and is an important constituent part of economic growth. There are costs involved in achieving green growth. In order to accelerate green growth, we must carry out organizational innovation and provide an incentive mechanism”. He also emphasized that China’s economic structure is currently being transformed, shifting towards a structure where services and consumption promoting domestic demand play a greater role in stimulating economic growth. Moreover, the growth must no longer be driven by low cost, cheap labor and low environmental protection costs as was the case in the past. The direction is being changed to rely on industrial upgrading and innovation instead.
Shenzhen Vice Mayor Tang introduced the efforts that the city was making in its comprehensive drive for a low-carbon economy. These efforts span several fields, including transportation, construction, and urban planning. Shenzhen is currently the city with the most extensive use of new energy vehicles in the world, with the total number of such vehicles already exceeding 3600, 3000 of which are pure electric vehicles. Such results, however, are difficult to achieve without organizational and policy innovation. Vice Mayor Tang also pointed out that Shenzhen hopes to reach its greenhouse gases emission peak before 2018, while maintaining the speed of economic growth.
Starting last year, the Low Carbon Development Program of the Energy Foundation China began paying close attention to the topic of green growth, supporting the development of many topics in the field, and promoting knowledge exchanges and best practices. In 2014 the Foundation also participates in a series of research and consultation activities, aimed at stimulating discussions and innovation in the field of green growth.
On the morning of March 21, some guests took part in a small closed-door roundtable discussion on the topic of Green Growth Opportunities. Dr. Lin Jiang, Senior Vice President of the Energy Foundation, and Hu Min, Director of the Energy Foundation China’s Low Carbon Development Program, took part in this discussion. These roundtable talks were also supported by the Energy Foundation China.