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Who is changing and influencing China’s development?

01 August 2011
Who is changing and influencing China’s development?

By Changhua Wu, Greater China Director, The Climate Group.


The Climate Group has been taking actions to promote the Clean Revolution around the world, including their search for the leader in the Clean Revolution.

The current list includes renowned media, the world’s top-100 CEOs, as well as governors of states, heads of provinces, and mayors, who are all celebrities.

We have also begun to seek for features in China who are affecting our ways of development in practice.

We have decided to present China as a case on the country-level to the world. There are much that China has achieved which can make the world gain a more holistic understating about her: the importance of China in this era, the embodiment of China’s leaders’ commitments to green development in the 125 plan, the new way of development that China has been working hard toward, and so on.

I often tell others: "If China can come up with a sustainable way of development that meet the satisfaction of 1.3-1.5 billion of people, that will be the greatest contribution that the executives and people of China can make to the world’s development in the 21st century."

I took part in the third Green Era annual conference on China’s social responsibilities organised by Nanfang Daily in Xi’an last Friday. I was deeply impressed and touched by what I experienced. I realised that aside from all those celebrities changing China and the world, there are still more silent reformers that we may not recognise.

They are known to few, yet what they have been doing day after day can gain in scale if spotted and promoted, leading to diverse activities and movements in the society. They are the real leaders and heroes.

Beijing’s Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, led by Director Ma Jun, came up with China’s Pollution Map, which has caught the attention of corporations, particularly that of multi-national companies in China.

The fact that the rivers and lakes are seriously polluted makes people shiver. Everyone living on this land is shocked and should initiatively join the activities that help preserve water resources in vast China.

The flowing streams of water are the veins of the earth and the origin of lives.

Those executives and managers of the corporations who give rise to the pollution should be aware of the fact that the temporary profits cannot compensate for the damage to the environment and the harm to mankind, let alone that the people affected include their families, descendants, and themselves.

Zhang-yuan Yue is against waste burning. He insists on seeking more reasonable ways which are less harmful to human bodies to deal with solid wastes in cities.

He turns to the media and society to raise people’s awareness, leading to the trend of mass participation in discussion and debates on the issue. I now fully understand the difficulties he has confronted.

I remember talking to a senior manager in a corporation about people’s anger toward waste burning. He stated that corporations are willing to tackle the problem of incomplete burning through advanced technology.

They can minimize the area influenced by the pollution. Aside from technical problems, we should not neglect what the West had undergone in the middle of the past century. With the rise of the awareness of residents, the standards of NIMBY have been augmenting.

People are not only against waste burning, but all other facilities that can cause dangerous pollution. No one wants any of these facilities in the neighbourhood. What I admire the most is Yue’s determination.

The most touching scene was the sounding and ceaseless applause outburst when the protector of Tien Lake, the leading actor of the promoting video of China, Chang Cheng-Hsiang, approached the stage. He is no more than a normal civilian, yet he outshines others with his incredible perseverance, which may appear 'insane'.

Even when confronting the high prices of bankruptcy, being abandoned by his wife and children, and enduring physical impairments, he maintained his dignity without giving up.

The clashes and awakening deep within combined with the urge of movements and the fear of the deteriorating reality that are wet by shedding tears, are indeed the most impressive and moving. No one with the purest kindness will not be shaken and touched by such a hero.

I appreciate media like Nanfang Daily and reporters that have been making efforts to find the green heroes and leaders in China. I look forward to the participation of more media in search of further more leaders, and record their stories.

The future and green development of China is not only determined by the forethought and ideals of top governors.

Only with the strong chain of the participation of the society as a whole and corporations’ pursuit of cleanness can the development of China’s greenness be carried out.

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Blog post translated by Sofia Li-Hsin Lee. 

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