Beijing Energy and Environment Exhibition 2008 Review

October 27, 2008 by  
Filed under China, Cities

(This article is contributed by our guest writer, Julian Wong, and was first published in The Green Leap Forward.)

This is the 50th post for The Green Leap Forward! To celebrate, we visited the 2008 China (Beijing) International Energy Saving and Environmental Protection Exhibition held at the Beijing Exhibition Center this past weekend (Oct 17 through 20).

The first thing that strikes the visitor is the Cathedral-like grandeur of the Beijing Exhibition Center. It was opened in 1954 “with the late Premier Zhou En-Lai cutting the red ribbon and Chairman Mao Tse-Tung contributing poetic thoughts.” It doesn’t look like it is LEED-certified, but being more than half a century old, visitors could take heart in the fact that the building’s carbon debt has probably been paid off a while ago.

The Green Leap Forward TV (GLFTV) film crew (i.e. me and my trusty Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3) spotted a maniacal looking tall white guy among the attendees. He turned out to be none other than the ever-enthusiastic “Sustainable John” from China’s Green Beat fame. John graciously agreed to sum up the mood in the Solar Hut portion of the exhibition:

This other clip shows what it was like in the outside area of the exhibition. Of special focus in this clip was a concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) installation on display. The company that makes these CPV units is Beijing Globalac (北京富利宝公司), which also makes a whole host of other power control systems for various commercial and industrial applications:

There were tons of other exhibits other than solar applications, such as home-scale wind turbines, energy efficient lighting and other home appliances, green building materials, smart electricity meters, electricity consumption monitoring software and hardware, and of course, technological applications that were deployed in the recent “Green Olympics”. According to the Star Daily, there were some 203 vendors spread across some 12,000 plus square meters. It really did feel like a whole lot more than 203 vendors though (felt more like 500 to 1,000, as mentioned in the above video). Here are just a few that caught the eye of GLF TV:

1. Semi-Permeable Landscape Tiles. Literally building their business around sand, Rechsand Science & Technology Group (仁创科技集团) has developed a semi-permeable landscaping tiles that can be used for stormwater protection and water recovery. Seeing is believing:

2. Geothermal Heat Pumps. Huaqing Group (华清集团) builds urban geothermal heat pump systems that can provide hot water or air-conditioning/heating for entire residential or commercial districts. This animation explains how their technology works. Its recent projects have included micro-power ground-source heat pump installation in the Olympic Village and a district heating/cooling system in a part of a Tianjin college campus. Pictured below is model of one of ground-heat source heating/cooling projects for a proposed commercial and retail area in Beijing with the blue lights depicting the circulation of air from the building through the underground pipe system, which extends 100 meters deep, and back up to the building. The basic idea is that the ground temperature at such depths maintain a relatively stable and moderate temperature throughout the year (in the high teens, in degrees Celsius) and thus acts as a heat source during the winter and a cooling source in the summers. These sort of infrastructure heavy but low-cost innovation systems might just be the kinds of clean energy systems that are suited for scaling up in China.

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3. Tubular Skylights. Beijing Eastview (北京东方风光新能源技术有限公司) makes tubular skylight systems that collect and concentrate external sunlight and channel it indoors along tube with a reflective inner surface. Kinda like a periscope. Eastview has completed projects in Beijing, Guandong, Fujian, Hebei and Shanghai, amongst other places. Pictured below, courtesy of the company’s website, are its installations in the Olympic Forest Park in Beijing.

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A great show all and all, but the time is now for action, implementation and scaling up.

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