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Expo envisions green city for better life

2010. 25 February

by Zhou Hanmin
( Over the past two centuries, particularly the latest 50 years, urbanization has occurred at an unprecedented pace around the world. More than 50 percent of the global population lives in cities that account for less than 1 percent of the world's total areas.

Amid rapid urbanization today, people's pursuit of modern life is increasingly confronted with such problems as limited supply of natural resources and strained ecological environment.

It is from such confrontation that a new round of scientific and technological revolutions may arise.

Scientists are expecting another scientific and technological revolution after a less active period of over 60 years and the first half of the 21st century will probably see it happen.

Accelerated urbanization and gestation of a new scientific and technological revolution have made low-carbon economy (LCE) a new model or concept for economic development.

Over the past 30 years, China's economy has been growing at an annual rate of 9.8 percent accompanied by an annual growth rate of 5.5 percent in energy consumption. For such a fast-growing economy, low-carbon economy is of great significance.

Like its predecessors, the Shanghai Expo is bound to be a showcase for innovative technologies, products and ideas. China as the host country will spare no effort to work with the participants in promoting the idea of energy conservation and environmental protection and the concept of low-carbon economy at the Expo.

The Chinese government and the Organizer of the Shanghai Expo will work to embody the concept of low-carbon economy in pavilion construction, in design and operation of the Expo site to showcase the technological innovations of the host country.

The Organizer will install solar-energy devices in the China Pavilion, Theme Pavilion, the Nanshi power plant and some other facilities, making the Expo site the largest urban area with extensive use of solar energy in China.

Three types of clean-energy vehicles will be used in the Expo site, including new type of trams, ultra-capacitor vehicles and hybrid vehicles using ultra-capacitors and battery. All the public vehicles in the Expo site will be free from carbon emissions and provide clean and eco-friendly transport services for visitors.

It is planned that 10 percent of the automobiles made in Shanghai every year will be powered by new energy by 2012, when Shanghai will be able to save 78 million liters of fuel and cut carbon emissions by 230,000 tons every year.

To make use of shallow geothermal resources and the heat of the Huangpu River that straddles the Expo site, heat pumps will be used to collect renewable and clean energy for both heating and cooling purposes.

Large-scale rainwater collection systems will be put in place on pavilion roofs and after purification, rainwater can be used for irrigation, thus saving water resources significantly.

Various physical and biological technologies will be employed to purify the water of Huangpu River for irrigation and landscaping within the Expo site.

"Everything begins with the World Expo" is the slogan and spirit that the World Expo has carried on for 158 years. Expo 2010 Shanghai China provides an important opportunity for the host country and all the participants to display how new energy, technologies and materials are used to maximize environmental protection and energy conservation.

(The author is Vice Director of the Executive Committee of Expo 2010 Shanghai China. Shanghai Daily condensed his article.)