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‘New normal’ brings new opportunity for low-carbon economy

Updated: Feb 2,2015 4:06 PM     chinadaily.com.cn

China’s economy has entered a period of new normal, which brings an opportunity for the development of a green and low-carbon economy and environmental protection, industry experts said during an annual event in Beijing on Jan 30.

The World Economic and Environmental Conference (WEC) Annual Meeting on Green and Low-Carbon Transformational Development was held in Beijing on Jan 30. It was followed by an awards ceremony for the 4th International Carbon-Value Award.

It was co-organized by the International Energy Conservation and Environment Protection Association (IEEPA), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

With the theme of “Idea leads low-carbon reform, Innovation facilitates green development”, the event brought together high-level officials from governments, international organizations and foreign embassies who shared their insights on low-carbon development, economic growth and environmental protection.

Several experts said during the event that China’s “new normal” brings an unprecedented opportunity for the development of a green and low-carbon economy and environmental protection. People should pay more attention to energy conservation and environmental protection.

China’s economy grew 7.4 percent in 2014, the weakest annual expansion in 24 years but still in line with market expectations, as the country braces for a “new normal” of slower yet higher quality growth. Shanghai municipality recently abandoned GDP growth targets to emphasize the quality and efficiency of the economy.

“Energy conservation and environmental protection is not only an industry, a technology, a project and an economic term, also a necessary internal theory for the sustained development of the nation and society”, said Jon Li, Secretary General of International Energy Conservation and Environment Protection Association (IEEPA) at his welcome speech.

Energy conservation and environmental protection is an important element of green and low-carbon transformation, the construction of ecological civilization and living in harmony with nature, Li added. “It is a broad noun, which involves every industry related to the national economy and people’s livelihood. Energy conservation and environmental protection is everywhere, and related to every industry, every enterprise and everyone.”

Environmental protection is also an economy, Li said. “We should act on our own initiative rather than as a firefighter playing a passive role. We should make environmental protection deeply rooted in all enterprises, products and technologies. Environmental protection is not a public benefit, but the obligation and responsibility we should assume being a human being, an enterprise, an organization even a country. “

Environmental benefits are also economic benefits, which is the essence of the win-win development of economic growth and environmental protection. “If we grasped this point, the energy conservation and environmental protection industry will make a significant change to our nation, our society and our living environment,” Li added.

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