By Alexander Chipman Koty
Shanghai will promote the development of its green manufacturing sector as a top priority, municipal government officials announced on June 5.
Green manufacturing refers to the use of environmentally-friendly practices throughout a product’s life cycle, from design, production, and packaging to application and recycling.
By 2020, Shanghai will ensure that 100 green factories, 20 green industrial parks, and 10 green supply chains will be set up. Further, by that year, Shanghai will create a mechanism for green manufacturing-related standards and assessment.
In addition, the Shanghai municipal government will take measures to strengthen clean manufacturing processes and improve resource and energy use in the manufacturing sector.
The announcement was made in anticipation of the Shanghai Energy-saving Publicity Week, which begins on June 11. The event, which is hosted by various Shanghai government departments, seeks to encourage the development of a sustainable economy.
Under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, China has made combating pollution and encouraging the development of green industries an increasing priority. In his speech at last year’s 19th Party Congress, Xi said that China had become a “torchbearer in the global endeavor for ecological civilization.”
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However, Shanghai and the surrounding Yangtze River Delta region – one of China’s most manufacturing-dense regions – have a ways to go in improving environmental conditions.
Despite the nationwide campaign to reduce air pollution, concentrations of PM 2.5 particulate matter in Shanghai increased by 1.9 percent year-on-year through the first four months of 2018.
In 2017, China released guidelines to boost industrial output in the green manufacturing sector in the Yangtze River Delta – where Shanghai is located – to reach RMB 5 trillion (US$742 billion) by 2020.
China’s ongoing campaign against pollution also includes a new environmental protection tax, which went into effect at the start of this year, as well as unannounced factory inspections by environmental regulators, among other measures.
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