Piloting Low Carbon Economic Zones in China 2009

Antony Froggatt, Chatham House

An overview of Low Carbon Zones (LCZ) is provided, setting out what they are, what they can include and the opportunities and incentives they can offer. These are considered in terms of the role LCZs could play within China, and the role that LCZs could play in driving a low carbon economy-wide transition. LCZs provide a testing ground for regulatory, economic, trade and investment policies, promoting the necessary scale of economic transformation for a low-carbon future. Examples of what they can include are set out, such as: demonstration and manufacturing of energy efficient and low carbon goods and services; low or zero carbon towns and infrastructure; and alternative transport modes. Within China they are seen as potentially playing an important role in their next industrial revolution and are being driven by strong local Chinese leadership and supported by central Government. The strategic commitment by China to develop practical decarbonisation paths is supported by strategic cooperation from the EU. The current status of LCZs within China are discussed and the case for, and steps towards developing one in Jilin are described.

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