Promoting Green Buildings & Cities towards Quality Times
In this tender month of April in 2018, with the theme of “Promoting Green Buildings towards Quality Times”, the Fourteenth International Conference on Green and Energy-Efficient Building & New Technologies and Products Expo (IGEBC) was opened at Zhuhai International Convention & Exhibition Center from 2nd to 3rd, involving over 3,000 representatives from home and abroad. Officials and guests addressed the opening ceremony, including Qiu Baoxing, Counselor of the State Council, Former Vice Minister of Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development and President of Chinese Society for Urban Studies, Chen Yiming, Chief Engineer of Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, Yang Xiping, Secretary of Party Leadership Group of Department of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of Guangdong Province, Zhang Yisheng, Deputy Mayor of Zhuhai Municipal People’s Government and Member of Party Leadership Group, Jiang Yi, Academician of Chinese Academy of Engineering, Professor of Building Energy Research Center, Tsinghua University. As an important part of the Conference, the International Green Model City Forum (IGMC Forum) was successfully convened on the morning of 3rd with the theme of “International Green Model City Initiative -- Facilitate the Transformation of Chinese Cities from Quantity-driven Growth to Quality-oriented Sustainable Development”, which was in line with that of the Conference. Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of UN-Habitat, sent her message to the Forum, where keynote speeches were delivered by experts of the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development and the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, senior representatives of Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS) and other world-famous experts.
At the opening ceremony, President Qiu Baoxing gave a thematic report entitled The Advantages and Disadvantages of the Ecological City Models ABC, which systematically analyzed the three models of ecological cities. He stressed that building an ecological city should avoid the “low-carbon trap” of a certain form and popularize a people-oriented model blending traditional and modern wisdom whose fundamental principle is to respect nature, ecology, history, culture, residents’ interests and the local climate by reasonably contextualizing regional planning to create a sustainable and duplicable mode of ecological cities with the help of Internet technology and renewable energy and materials. Green buildings and healthy buildings are the cells of an ecological city and form the basis of urban resilience. Therefore, the development of green buildings can promote ecological cities to grow in a greener and more harmonious way.
△The International Green Model City exhibition booth attracted many guests and professionals, which displayed its idea that “a sustainable city is like a tree”.
This year’s IGMC Forum was organized by Shenzhen Better City Institute and co-organized by the World Best Practices Magazine with the great support from the Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS). The guests present included Wang Dehui, Former Deputy Director-General of the Nature and Ecology Conservation Department, SEPA & Director of China Office for “Implementation of the Convention of Biological Diversity”, Head of Experts Group of Environmental Engineering Assessment Center, Ministry of Environmental Protection of the PRC, Xu Lifeng, Chief of Information Branch of the Center for Science & Technology and industrialization Development of the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of the PRC, Lu Haifeng, Secretary General of Global Forum on Human Settlements, Qu Wanju, Under Secretary General, China Research Society for Urban Development, Arab Hoballah, Senior Sustainability Expert, Former Chief, Sustainable Lifestyles, Cities and Industry Branch, UNEP, Ralph Wahnschafft, Independent Consultant on Sustainable Development Policies, Serge Salat, President, Urban Morphology and Complex Systems Institute, Paris, France,Leading Expert of International Green Model City Standards 3.0, Dr. Kelly Wang, Vice General Manager, Overseas Division, Country Garden Holdings Co, Ltd. Zeng Yu, Deputy Chief Architect of the Architectural Design Institute, China Academy of Building Research,, Jiang Juntao, Vice General Manager of LAY-OUT Planning Consultants Co., Ltd. and Liu Weibing, President of Sichuan David Architectural Design Co., Ltd.,China.
△Qu Wanju, Under Secretary General, China Research Society for Urban Development, chaired the IGMC Forum’s opening ceremony.The IGMC Forum, consisted of opening addresses, keynote speeches, dialogue and the demonstration of the IGMC online assessment and certification system, featured the strategies and methodologies of the IGMC Standards 3.0 and discussed the role of the IGMC initiatives and standards in effective planning and management of urban spatial development so as to build people-oriented sustainable cities for all, to help Chinese cities to transform from quantity-driven growth to quality-oriented sustainable development and to facilitate the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda at local level. Insightful ideas were exchanged to promote collaboration and innovation in achieving the goal indicated by the theme of the Forum.
△Lu Haifeng, Secretary General of Global Forum on Human SettlementsLu Haifeng said in his speech, “The principles and standards of IGMC Initiative are in line with China’s policies of ecological civilization, new-style urbanization and green development. The Initiative can serve as an integrated strategy to help Chinese cities to transform from quantity-driven growth to quality-oriented sustainable development by providing a technical standard and assessment tool for the better planning and construction of cities and large scale development projects. It can also generate and enhance the value of cities and projects, facilitate the construction of green low-carbon cities and distinctive towns as well as create a better life for citizens and their future generations.”
△Wang Dehui, Former Deputy Director-General of the Nature and Ecology Conservation Department, SEPA & Director of China Office for “Implementation of the Convention of Biological Diversity”, Head of Experts Group of Environmental Engineering Assessment Center, Ministry of Environmental Protection of the PRCWang Dehui, said, “President Xi Jinping mentioned in 2013, ‘A good ecological environment is the fairest public product and the most beneficial to people's well-being.’ To improve urban environment quality is the most important goal in building a sustainable city. GFHS has long been working to promote the construction of green cities and has issued the Global Green City Index. Over the past decade, 34 cities in 14 countries, such as China, the USA, Germany and France, have received the “Global Green City” Award. On the basis of the Index, GFHS has also made the International Green Model City Standards, which provides advanced assessment and guidance tools for the development of sustainable green cities and plays a positive role in enhancing China’s ecological civilization as well as improving quality for both urban environment and city life.
△Xu Lifeng, Chief of Information Branch of the Center for Science & Technology and industrialization Development of the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of the PRCXu Lifeng congratulated on the opening of the Forum and pointed out, “It is human’s shared mission to promote the local implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda and to build safe, inclusive, prosperous and sustainable cities and human settlements. In the new times, green buildings focus more on higher quality performance, safety, durability, livability, energy efficiency and economy for upgrading to enhance people’s senses of satisfaction, happiness and security.”
△Arab Hoballah, Senior Sustainability Expert, Former Chief, Sustainable Lifestyles, Cities and Industry Branch, UNEPArab Hoballah, said, “The IGMC Standards is rooted in the UN 10-Year Framework of Programs on Sustainable Consumption and Production, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda. It is also closely related to the 17 sustainable development goals. The IGMC Initiative has partnered and teamed up with UNEP-SBCI, GI-REC and UN-Habitat initiative. It can bridge gaps for knowledge and action, contextualize other tools to respond to needs and enable local authorities in their commitment to sustainability and ecological civilization.”
As one of the effective tools of the IGMC Standards 3.0, the IGMC Online Assessment System made its debut in China, which was one of the highlights of the Forum. The system was developed on the basis of the IGMC Standards 3.0 to provide more convenient online assessment and certification for global sustainable cities and communities with the help of the Internet and Big Data technology. Everyone can rate their cities and communities on the system, which makes it much easier for city and community managers as well as stakeholders to get involved.
△Dialogue SectionAt 12:00 noon, the Forum was rounded off with complete success. Many attendees spoke highly of the Forum, “The IGMC principles and strategies are advanced. They are significant for China’s future urbanization and also thought-provoking for us. Hopefully, we can learn from and apply the IGMC Standards in our city or projects.”
△Group photo of SpeakersAccording to GFHS, the supporter of this year’s IGMC Forum, the 2018 Global Forum on Human Settlements will be held at the UN Conference Center in Bangkok, Thailand in the end of October this year. The IGMC Initiative will also be one of the major topics at the Forum.
Link: The International Green Model City InitiativeSupported by international organizations like UNEP and other national and local governments, Global Forum on Human Settlements (GFHS) launched the International Green Model City Initiative (IGMC Initiative) at the UN Headquarters in April, 2011 to address the great challenges of the rapid global urbanization. The Initiative never stops improving itself to keep up with the times.
The IGMC Initiative aims to build sustainable cities and human settlements for all and to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda by taking the IGMC Standards 3.0 as an advanced assessment and guidance tool for sustainable urban development and by providing innovative concepts, integrated strategies and methodologies, benchmarks and monitoring framework as well as demand-oriented solutions and pilots, in conjunction with other approaches. The IGMC Standards 3.0 was released at the Habitat III in 2016. It’s vision is based on six basic principles: safety, sustainability, equity, identity, prosperity and happiness. It is rooted in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda.
Currently, some well-known cities and enterprises have joined the IGMC Initiative, such as Vancouver (Canada), Cape Town (South Africa), Mannheim (Germany), Seberang Perai (Malasia), Cuenca (Ecuador), Liuyang National Economic & Technical Development Zone, Wuyi County of Zhejiang Province, China Railway Real Estate Group, Vanke, Country Garden, Mission Hills. Some of them have also been on the list of IGMC pilots.