[photopress:Tsinghua_University.gif,full,alignright]A recent report on sustainable development by Jones Lang LaSalle has recommended China makes “green” developments a priority. Currently, China’s awareness of how to improve the environment and save energy through sustainable property development falls behind that of the West.
Sustainable buildings, as defined by the New Zealand Ministry for the Environment, are those which are designed, built and operated with low environmental, social and economic impacts, and which improve the welfare and health of the people who use them. They take advantage of ‘green’ strategies of conserving energy and water and improving waste management and indoor air quality.
Justin Keane, author of the JLL report, said, ‘China has reached a critical point in its development, and although the government has made good progress with enforcement effective at the district level, more needs to be done to significantly impact China’s growing environmental issues.’
Examples of sustainable buildings are almost nonexistent in smaller cities, while first-tier cities only have a handful of examples in Grade A properties. Currently, 95% of Chinese buildings are regarded as ‘high energy consuming’.
Efforts in big cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou have already begun to encourage sustainable development, such as denying the approval of projects that don’t meet green standards, promoting energy-efficient technologies through financial incentives and supporting energy-efficient buildings.
Pictured is China’s first energy-efficient building in Beijing’s Tsinghua University, completed in March 2005. It uses 100 examples of energy-saving technologies and products and consumes just 30% of the average annual power needs of similar buildings in the capital.
Source: Shanghai Daily, WATAsia Research, China Today