REEEP-funded roadmap promotes RE in buildings in Changjiang River region

02-04-2013, Changjiang, China

A newly released roadmap document outlines a strategy for integrating renewable energy technologies into buildings in China’s Changjiang River (CJR) basin.  The region covers an area of 1.8 million km² with a population of over 500 million. It includes China's major industrial centres and generates 40% of the country's GDP. The region is also growing quickly, with 500 million m2 of new construction added each year.

The Chinese government sees the CJR region as a vital building block in changing the country's energy structure. A REEEP-funded project implemented by Zhejiang University developed the Roadmap which was released at the end of March 2013.

Collective-individual solar water systems with rooftop collectors (left) and supplemental balcony type collectors (right) in high rise residential buildings

The document provides an outline plan for promoting solar water heating (SWH) and shallow geothermal systems (GHSPs) in the CJR region.  These are the two technologies that are deemed to have nationwide roll-out potential in China. Between city scale demonstrations that have been ongoing since 2006 and full nationwide deployment, regional demonstrations such as this provide a transition phase.

The document includes a worldwide review of RE in buildings and analyses the experiences from local city demonstration projects in the region, while also giving an inventory of the  locally-available RE resources.   It sets out target design and planning for SWHs and GHSPs in  buildings for the next five years, and based on this, makes recommendations on future policy.

In reviewing what has worked effectively so far, the report finds that capacity building for government combined with mandatory measures have helped the spread of SWH.  In addition, several successful promotion models were identified:

  • Planning for RE based energy supply stations in new neighbourhoods of cities
  • Linking with existing policy or programs, such as the Affordable Housing Projects
  • Enforcing building energy efficiency evaluation requirements in the design stage, as proved in Zhejiang province
  • Promotion of energy management contracting (EMC) businesses
  • Using innovative non-financial incentive policies, such as floor-area ratio reward policy in Hainan

The report also gives a detailed analysis of the barriers to wide-scale deployment of renewable technologies in buildings.  An 59-page English-language Executive Summary of the Renewables in Buildings: Roadmap in Changjiang River Region  report can be downloaded below.

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