International Experts and Business Leaders Gathered in Washington DC to Attend the 2016 Global Forum on China’s Urban Air Pollution Control
The 2016 Global Forum on China’s Urban Air Pollution Control was held in Washington DC on June 17th, 2016. Around 100 scholars, governmental officials, business leaders and non-government organization representatives from the U.S., China and Europe attended the forum and shared their valuable experience and knowledge on urban air pollution control and the latest green technologies. They also discussed the challenges of China’s urban air pollution control and potential opportunities for cooperation and partnerships in the fields of environmental policies and green technologies between China and the U.S.
The forum was organized by the International Fund for China’s Environment (IFCE) and marked the first of such events which successfully drew international and attention on China’s urban air pollution control. Friday’s forum was strongly supported by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the Paulson Institute, the Institute for Clean Air Companies, the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Embassy of People’s Republic of China, China’s National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation, the Clean Air Alliance of China, the Center for U.S -China Technology, Innovation & Development, Professional Association for China’s Environment and others.
The president of IFCE, Dr. Ping He, opened the forum by welcoming all of the speakers, panelists, media representatives and attendees. Dr. Ping He pointed out the aim of the forum is to bring international support for China’s urban air pollution control, to build a solid platform for exchange of green technologies, and to facilitate environmental cooperation between China and the U.S. Li Bin, (the Economic Counselor of the Embassy of the People's Republic of China), Jens Acker (the Counselor of Energy of Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany), David Vance Wagner (US Dept of State, Climate Office, China Counselor）, Hilary French (Program Officer of UNEP Regional Office for North America), and Richard J. (Tad) Ferris (Partner of Foley & Lardner LLP and the Vice Chair of International Fund for China’s Environment) delivered respective speeches, and expressed their concerns regarding air pollution and their expectations for the forum.
The President of the International Fund for China’s Environment, Dr. Ping He, Delivering the Opening Speech
Speakers in the plenary sessions included Avi Garbow (General Counsel of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency), Kebin He (Dean of the School of Environment at Tsinghua University and academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering), Radha Muthiah (CEO of Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, UN Foundation), Stanley Mack (Board President, Institute for Clean Air Companies), and S.William Becker (Executive Director, National Association of Clean Air Agencies).
General Counsel Avi Garbow indicated that since the U.S government began enforcing the Clean Air Act in the 1970s, some major pollutant indicators have decreased as much as 75%. The enforcement of the Clean Air Act was significantly effective and it encouraged social innovation and development of green technologies. Moreover, experience from many countries has proven that economic development and air quality are compatible, even to the extent that the latter can become the engine of the former. He suggested to enhance the level of transparency of environmental information and data, encourage increased public engagement, as well as improve upon regulation enforcement and accountability. All these three are significant factors of future improvement in air quality, but law enforcement is the most important of them. Dr. Kebin He outlined the achievements and improvements of air pollution control in China: the PM 2.5 index in Beijing and the surrounding area has decreased 27% since 2014; the air quality of that area has a high potential to reach the national air quality standard by 2030; and the air quality in the Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta may reach the standard even sooner. Ms. Muthiah pointed out that indoor air pollution has already become the “silent killer”. She also mentioned there are still 3 billion people using timber, coal and other solid fuels to cook at home, with 45% of people in China still using solid fuels to cook being a huge challenge and opportunity for China. President Stanley Mack introduced the trend of air pollution control technologies and stressed when governments enact standards,they also need to consider the feasibility of technologies. Mr. S. William Becker introduced the experience and methodologies in trans-boundary air pollution control, as well as the reasons for the success of the Clean Air Act and the new environmental and public health challenges and opportunities the U.S. currently faces.
Avi Garbow (General Counsel of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency) Delivering his Speech
Kebin He (Dean of the School of Environment at Tsinghua University and academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering) delivering his Speech
The forum’s two panel discussion topics were Best Practices and Opportunities in Urban Air Pollution Control and Innovative Technologies and Trends on Air Pollution Mitigation. Panelists from the Clean Air Alliance of China, the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the International Council on Clean Transportation and the World Wildlife Fund US attended the first panel and discussed how to use and improve the current energy system to cut emissions, how to design reasonable regulations with the lowest cost and how to help enterprises effectively integrate environmental policies and regulations. Panelists from The State Environmental Protection Key Laboratory of Urban Particulate Air Pollution Prevention, AmeriSci Group & AmeriSci International; Clyde Bergemann Power Group Americas Inc; ADA Carbon Solutions; the Institute for Clean Air Companies and Center for US-China Technology Innovation & Development, attended the second panel and discussed the innovative methodologies of desulfurization, denitrification, and mercury control. Panelists also shared their experience in China’s market and opportunities lying in China.
Panel Discussion 1: Best Practices and Opportunities in Urban Air Pollution Control
Panel Discussion 2: Innovative Technologies and Trends on Air Pollution Mitigation
On June 18th, the second day of the forum, IFCE also held Tech Exchanges and Business Matchmaking Session, which built a solid platform for enterprises. During the forum there was also an art exhibition themed around smog issues in China. Artist Chenxiao Zhang from Bowling Green State University displayed his photography and sculptures.
The forum was sponsored and supported by Clyde Bergemann Power Group, Foley & Lardner LLP, Caervision Group, the Winery at La Grange, and Zhixi Zen Tea of China.
The forum invited Xinhua News Agency, Phoenix Television, China News Service, People’s Daily, Science and Technology Daily and other media agencies to attend. In addition to these mainstream medias which reported on the forum, there were also nearly 80 print and Internet medias which shared the news, including Beijing Daily, Sina, Sohu, 163, Le TV and others.
For more information please visit www.ifce.org.
Some of the guests and staff of IFCE gathered at conference site