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U.S.-China cooperation produces energy efficiency center in Beijing

News Release

December 03, 1993 Share This!

RICHLAND, Wash. — The U.S. and China have broken new ground with the formal opening ceremony today of the Beijing Energy Efficiency Center (BECon). BECon a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization staffed by local experts, will promote energy efficiency to achieve economic development and environmental protection.

This is the fifth energy efficiency center to be launched by U.S. government and nonprofit organizations in partnership with foreign countries. The other centers are in Moscow, Russia; Warsaw, Poland; Prague, The Czech Republic; and Sofia, Bulgaria.

The Beijing Center is a cooperative effort of the U.S. Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, the Environmental Protection Agency, the World Wildlife Fund and the Energy Research Institute of the State Planning Commission of China.

"This center in Beijing is another example of exactly the kind of partnership we in the Clinton administration have been striving for," said Secretary of Energy Hazel O'Leary. "It gives U.S. businesses opportunities to use our experience and promote our technologies in energy efficiency. It offers China new tools for sustainable development and clean, efficient energy use."

Bill Chandler, director of the Advanced International Studies Unit with the Pacific Northwest Laboratory's Global Studies Program, developed the concept and began establishing the energy efficiency centers in 1991.

"Our Laboratory's research pointed clearly to the need for in-country institutions that could recommend reformed energy policies, encourage business ventures for upgraded technologies, sponsor demonstration projects and provide public education," Chandler said. "Their successes have exceeded expectations."

The Beijing Energy Efficiency Center's board of directors includes the founders and leading Chinese energy policy-makers, managers and researchers. BECon's executive director is Zhou Dadi, currently deputy director of ERI. Initial funding is being provided by the DOE, the EPA and the WWF. BECon's goal is to become self-supporting after four years.

China's transition from a planned to a market economy offers opportunities to create new policies and promote private business ventures and investment in energy efficiency. BECon will promote energy efficiency through four types of activities:


  • Providing policy advice to central and local government agencies;
  • Supporting energy-efficiency business development;
  • Creating and implementing public information and technical training programs; and
  • Designing mechanisms for financing energy efficiency, e.g., administration of a large multilateral development bank loan for packages of small efficiency projects.


BECon's creation acknowledges the international importance of improving energy efficiency in China. China is the world's second largest emitter of greenhouse gases, relying heavily on coal.

For further information in China, contact BECon Director Zhou Dadi, Tel: 011-861-491-4956; in the United States, Jessica Hamburger, Battelle and PNL Advanced International Studies Unit, 202-646-5242.

Tags: Energy, Technology Transfer and Commercialization, Energy Efficiency, Economic Development

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