China seeks energy efficiency in construction

Updated: 2015-10-15 09:24

By Hua Shengdun in Washington(China Daily USA)

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China ranks second in energy-efficiency investment for buildings with $18 billion, according to the latest market report from the International Energy Association.

The annual report was released at the Center for Strategic International Studies in Washington on Wednesday.

"The US has the largest amount of investment followed by China and Germany, based on the information that we are able to get," said Philippe Benoit, head of the Energy Efficiency and Environment Division at the IEA in Paris.

"Every year we look at a particular sector to analyze energy-efficiency investment," Benoit said. "Last year, we looked at transport, and this year we looked at buildings. We estimated that investment in energy efficiency in buildings is $90 billion, which includes the installation of the inspection system and the lighting in buildings.

"Energy-efficiency investment in China has continued to grow in step with the pace of investment growth in the building-construction market," the report said. "In 2014, more than $18 billion was invested in building energy efficiency in China, with more than $11 billion of that invested in residential buildings."

The report also said that the market for energy efficiency in China "has been driven by a combination of energy service-company investment, consumer spending, and voluntary and mandatory government programs (such as building codes and retrofit programs). More than 70 percent of energy-efficiency investment occurred in new buildings".

China plays a crucial role in reducing carbon emissions to address climate change and it has started to shoulder that responsibility, Benoit said.

"China today consumes 3,000 million tons of oil, which is equivalent to 22 percent of world total consumption," he said. "While the increase in energy consumption doubles or even triples, it would be about two thirds of the total consumption of the whole world, which is not a sustainable path to develop China’s economy.

"I have been to China before," Benoit said. "It is interesting to see the recognition of the need to seek transformation to move to a different way of growth."

Benoit also shared his experiences in Brazil and India.

"With this regard, we can see there are a lot of efforts China put into energy-efficiency reform and continued efforts in that regard," he said. "And in some of the discussions we had there, the Chinese agencies have (shown) a desire to improve their ability to analyze what is going to impact energy efficiency as well as predict and project where the economy needs to go."

Pan Jialiang in Washington contributed to this story.

                                                                                                                            (China Daily USA 10/15/2015 page2)