Economic Development and Environmental Sustainability
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Ecological Economy Deepens Cooperation Between Mainland China and Macao

 

On May 22, 2019, Li Junyang, Executive Vice President of International Ecological Economy Promotion Association (IEEPA), and delegations from Public Policy Department and the Green Mine Environmental Protection Committee visited the Direccao dos Servicos de Proteccao Ambiental (DSPA) of the Macao Special Administrative Region Government. The two sides held a discussion concerning eco-economy. Ye Kuolin, Deputy Director of DSPA, Chen Guohao, Director of Environmental Protection Infrastructure Centre, and officials from DSPA joined the discussion. The two sides reached consensus on the recycling of the construction solid waste and kitchen waste, and the building of market operation mechanism to enhance economic development model and solve urban environmental problems.

Vice President Li Junyang introduced that in recent years, with the strong support of the Central Government, the construction of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao Greater Bay Area has achieved marked progress; as a professional and international association based in Beijing, IEEPA focuses on promoting the sustainable development of economy and environment. Answering the call of the Central Government, and following the principles of Green Development, Environmental Protection; Win-win Cooperation of The Development Plan for Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, IEEPA actively participates in the work of ecological economy field of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao Greater Bay Area.

In order to further promote the utilization of the solid waste of the construction work and the coordinated development of green mines, IEEPA published the first National Eco-Friendly and High-Quality Green Mine Construction Guidance (Aggregate Enterprises) in China in January, with the guidance of Hao Jiming and Peng Suping, academicians of Chinese Academy of Engineering(CAE), and the support of academicians form CAE and Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), including Tang Xiaoyan, academician of CAE, Du Xiangwan, academician and former Vice President of CAE, Ni Jinren, academician of CAS, and Deputy Director of the Beijing Municipal Ecological Environment Bureau, Chen Yong, academician of CAE, and Chairman of the Guangdong Provincial Association for Science and Technology. The Guidance was prefaced by Qu Geping, Deputy Director of the former State Council Environmental Protection Group, and the first Director of National Environmental Protection Bureau, laying a solid foundation for the utilization of the solid waste of the construction work and the coordinated development of aggregate enterprises.

With the rapid development of Macao''s economy, the amount of solid waste has continued to rise in recent years. There is a huge potential in the cooperation between The Macao Solid Waste Resource Management Plan (2017-2026) in investing resource construction and optimizing resource recovery facilities, including the expansion of waste incineration centers and the selection of screening facilities of inert materials, and the projects that is building by Green Mine Environmental Protection Professional Committee.

Suggestions on Promoting Solid Waste Utilization and Building No Waste Society by building No Waste City was proposed by academicians from CAE, including Du Xiangwan, Liu Xu, Qian Yi, Chen Yong, Hao Jiming, Tang Xiaoyan, Hou Li''an, and He Kebin., and it was approved by national leaders. In January this year, the General Office of the State Council issued the “Pilot Work Plan for the Construction of “No Waste City”. On May 13th, the construction of “No Waste City” was announced in Shenzhen, and “11+5” cities such as Shenzhen and Xiong’an New District were the first pilot zone. It was led by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, and 18 ministries including the National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Natural Resources, participated in the pilot project. Under this circumstance, there isa huge potential in the cooperation on the recycling of solid waste resources between the cities of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau Greater Bay Area

On behalf of DSPA, Ye Kuolin, Acting Director and Deputy Director of the DSPA expressed warm on the visit of Vice President Li Junyang, and introduced the environmental protection in Macao. The Macao Solid Waste Resource Management Plan (2017-2026) was launched in 2017, which formulates policies on solid waste, specific waste reduction targets and action plans. Currently, Macau has established four environmental protection facilities, sewage treatment facilities and solid waste incineration centers, and constructed waste landfills and ecological protection zones; in June 2013, the governments of Guangdong and Macao signed the “Guangdong and Macao Environmental Protection Cooperation Agreement” and reached a consensus on the solution of Macao''s environmental protection issues in a complementary way. The former Central Ministry of Environmental Protection and other central ministries and commissions granted a franchise approval to the Guangdong-Australia environmental cooperation project in 2014, which has achieved breakthrough progress; Ye Kuolin suggested that the cooperation between the two sides could be conducted under this framework, which would help accelerate the cooperation.

Chen Guohao, Director of the Environmental Protection Infrastructure Centre of DSPA said that due to the limitation of land area, solid waste is a problem for Macao. The solid waste in Macao mainly consists of domestic garbage and construction waste. For the disposal of domestic garbage, Macao mainly adopts the method of incineration. The Macao garbage incineration center completed in 1992 was expanded to a processing capacity of 1,500 tons/day in 2008, and plans to expand to the third phase to reach 3,000 tons/day. Macao also plans to build a facility to treat effluent kitchen waste with anaerobic technology, which will generate biogas for power generation. Macao produced 200 tons of construction waste in 2018. It is mainly disposed of by landfill. However, there is only one landfill in Macao, and its height is constantly rising, posing ecological and safety hazards. In 2015, the Central Government approved Macao to transport urban waste to the mainland for reclamation. The specific operation method is still in consultation with the Guangdong provincial government, and the progress plan is also subject to many practical problems and needs to be resolved step by step.

Vice President Li Junyang introduced that the disposal of solid waste construction waste in the city involves the issue of transportation and market recycling radius. According to the survey data of IEEPA, It is more appropriate to establish a storage and disposal centre far more than 40 km where the city is relatively concentrated. He also introduced that some Mainland cities pass local legislation to facilitate the recycling of resources into the new construction market, which has achieved good results; Beijing currently has both private and SOE enterprises, and has entered the field of recycling of construction wastes. Private enterprises need to follow the regulations, because it has long industrial chain, and relatively high pressure on capital turnover. While for SOE enterprises, especially municipalities, roads and bridges, etc., they have sufficient internal market digestibility, and the reuse needs can be resolved by external markets. Regarding the current situation of the lack of land resources in Macao, Li Junyang suggested that it is possible to consider the establishment of a full-scale disposal center, which is now relatively mature in technology. Most of the urban wastewater treatment plants in Korea are built underground; and the underground fully enclosed sewage treatment plant in Beijing was officially opened in Beijing in 2016, which is also the largest boudoir reclaimed water plant in Asia. It has built a green space theme park on the ground and built a fully enclosed sewage treatment plant underground. In addition to reducing air pollution, it has also realized intensive use of land.

Ye Kuolin said that these new practices and ideas are very useful for reference. They not only solve the problems of the ecological environment, but also bring ecological and economic benefits. I hope that the appropriate time will be arranged to send people to study and research in Mainland China. In this regard, Li Junyang expressed his willingness to provide support and assistance.

Ye Kuolin added that since Macao and the Mainland China belong to different customs zones, and the standards for waste pretreatment and inspection and quarantine standards are different, although there is central policy support, subject to objective factors, Macao and the Mainland China cooperation on inert waste and disposal of used cars is still slow. The land area of Macao is only 30.1 square kilometers, of which only 12 square kilometers is not reclaimed. The population of Macao is only 660,000, but it receives 30 million tourists every year. Therefore, 30 to 40% of the garbage in Macao is kitchen waste. The rapid increase in construction waste such as infrastructure and old house renovations, the heavy pressure on the ecological environment, and regional cooperation is indeed the way out for Macao. The Macao Solid Waste Resource Management Plan (2017-2026) proposes that Macau''s goal is to reduce the production of 2.11 kg of garbage per person per day from 2016 to 1.48 kg of garbage per person per day in 2026. DSPA was established in 2009, while National Environmental Protection Bureau was established in 1986. The law enforcement experience and management experience of the National Environmental Protection Bureau are worth learning. He believes that there are many opportunities for cooperation in ecological economy between the two sides under the framework of One Country, Two Systems. They need joint innovative thinking and pioneering tests, and they are happy to see innovative cooperation in environmental protection technology and environmental protection systems.

Finally, IEEPA presented the National Eco-Friendly and High-Quality Green Mine Construction Guidance (Aggregate Enterprises) which will be launched by China Environmental Science Press, and WEC Journal.After the meeting, Chen Guohao accompanied the investigation of the waste incineration project of the Macao Urban Environmental Protection Infrastructure Center.

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