Specific reduction targets for each energy-intensive sector will guide the City of Qingdao in achieving its emissions targets, despite experiencing rapid economic growth.

The Challenge

Qingdao is a fast-growing city with a high proportion of manufacturing seeking to pursue further economic growth. The city's new low-carbon plan ensures that Qingdao will not be plagued by air pollution like many neighboring cities.

The Solution

The Qingdao Low-Carbon Development Plan, part of the second batch of Chinese low-carbon pilots, has put forward specific, systematic, and comprehensive actions and policies. The plan, running from 2014 to 2020, includes systems for spatial layout, industry, energy supply, and transportation. The plan has issued guidance for every department in the city, encouraging the local government to become low-carbon in all operations. Other Chinese cities are expected follow in Qingdao's footsteps to make low-carbon development plans.Qingdao has established a close connection between its economic development target and mitigation target over the short, medium, and long term. Before 2020, Qingdao will focus on improving energy efficiency and rationalization of industrial structure. After 2020, transport and buildings will be the key areas of carbon emissions control. Low-carbon standards in the buildings and transport sectors will be perfected in order to avoid lock-in effects that could hinder the mitigation efforts. The city seeks to cut the carbon intensity level per unit of GDP by 50% in 2020 from 2005 levels.

Environmental Benefits –  The annual average PM2.5 concentration has decreased from 66 μg/m3 in 2013 to 45 μg/m3. Likewise, the quality of water and soil has improved.

Social Benefits –  Employment opportunities have been created in the service industry as a result of pushing low-carbon development.

Economic Benefits –  The city has experienced rapid economic growth, yet at the same time cut its carbon intensity, signaling healthy growth and preparing the city to decouple carbon emissions from economic growth in the future.

Health Benefits –  Morbidity and mortality connected to climate change-related local epidemics have been on the decline. Curbing the growth of carbon emissions can further improve air quality and the well-being of urban residents.

About Cities100

Presented by C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40), Sustainia and Realdania – Cities100 2017 showcases leading solutions to urban climate challenges in five sectors: Energy, Waste, Adaptation, Mitigation and Transportation.

Available online and in print, Cities100 provides stakeholders an accessible format to explore achievable solutions for climate action in cities, and will be a useful tool for relevant groups ranging from impact investors and development organizations, to mayors and city governments. You can access the full Cities100 2017 publication online here.

  • Economic
  • Environmental
  • Health
  • Social
Emissions Reduction
40m tons of CO2 emissions will be reduced by 2020, slashing carbon intensity per unit of GDP by 50% from 2005 levels
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