China Puts Its Sights on Being Renewable Energy Leader

35 million homes in China get their hot water from solar collectors and Worldwatch sees nation becoming world leader in five years.

Published: 03-Oct-2005

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Smog, soot and a thirst for oil: that's one image of China.

But the Asian colossus is also seen leading the way in the use of "green" energies as alternatives to fossil fuels, the head of a leading environmental watchdog said on Wednesday.

"China is already big in renewables. In 5 years time we see them as a world leader in this department," Chistopher Flavin, president of the U.S.-based Worldwatch Institute, told Reuters on the sidelines of an energy conference in Johannesburg.


Removal of the ban came as pressure mounts on city administrators to tackle horrible traffic congestion, air pollution and possible fuel supply, caused to a large extent by a rapidly growing number of cars on the road. PHOTO: First snow in Beijing Dec. 31, 2005, courtesy of China Daily.

In the first 10 months of 2005, China's exported autos increased 133.6 percent year on year. For the first time, auto exports exceeded the import by 7,000 units, including 105 electric cars exported to the U.S. Photo of Miles ZX-40, an electric car it plans to import from China.

Chinese vehicles will be a threat to established U.S. auto sellers because vehicles from China are likely to be much cheaper than those from Europe, Japan or North America.


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