Energy and materials consumption is an essential part of any economy, but especially so for China, which has massive industry sectors. China’s reliance on heavy industry to boost its economy has led to serious environmental impacts. Fortunately, the government has been active in addressing the problem; to decouple GDP from environmental harms. Recent initiatives have included an environmental tax (to take effect in 2018) and a slew of industrial policies that specifically target environmental protection. Our contributions in this research area covers numerous themes to support government policy, enforcement, and promote industrial development.
Energy and emissions modeling. Unfortunately, many analyses do not include environmental impacts, opting to view them as externalities. Our main focus is to understand the full impacts of anthropogenic activities using a host of different environmental, economic and social impacts modeling techniques. One of the biggest bottlenecks in modeling is getting relevant data, so we work closely with Chinese ministries and local enterprises to collect data that minimize uncertainties. Only through robust modeling of complex systems can we start to take action on cleaning up industries.
Greenhouse gas emissions and co-reduction. China has moved into a pivotal role in the global fight against climate change; not just because it is the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitter, but also because of its ambitious plans to peak emissions before 2030. We provide the fundamental analysis for government and business to understand the implications of these policies, mapping out pathways and scenarios to meet targets and beyond. We work with industry to assess CO2 reduction technologies, in particular promoting co-reduction technologies that can be implemented more cost-effectively.
Energy efficiency and conservation. Energy production and consumption has some of the largest environmental impacts of any industry; yet our economy cannot function without it. Our centre’s research focuses on developing energy systems in a sustainable way, through innovative renewable technologies, smart management and conservation campaigns. We developed the framework for the national energy efficiency ‘leader’ program, which promotes cooperation between and across different industries in best practices for energy efficiency.
Clean technology transfer. Based on our in-depth research into various industry sectors, we have built an extensive database of leading technologies, experts in the field and projects around the nation. On one hand, our assessment of the cost-benefits, reliability and maturity of different technologies helps our partners find the right solutions for sustainable development. On the other, it helps catalyze the dissemination of clean, efficient technologies.