On 25th March, the founder of i2Cool, Dr. Martin ZHU, was invited to present as a guest speaker at the 2023 International Conference on Construction Innovation (ICCI’23), Chongqing, China.He discussed with the delegates the obstacles to reaching “zero carbon” in Chongqing, one of the “furnaces cities”, by the summer of 2023.
The highest temperature ever recorded
The hottest temperature for ten consecutive days was 40 °C plus.
Southern China saw scorching heat waves last year due to the robust development of a subtropical high-pressure system. Not only the daytime heat is crazy, but the night is also extravagant. The city is steaming all day long. In July, Chongqing meteorological service sent out the first national “high temperature red warning signal” with a maximum temperature of 41 °C.
Electricity costs were skyrocketing for many Chongqing families as this city is the first national actual furnace city. Many people thought they could avoid the expensive fruits and ice cream but couldn’t avoid paying excessive electrical bills. August will undoubtedly be hotter; some may even be terrified about the costs. The worsening climate, global warming, and a lack of energy are the monstrous forces underlying the expensive bills. The power deficit might no longer be a periodic phenomenon confined to a limited number of geographical areas as the power demand rises. Instead, it could become the new normal.
In addition, Chongqing’s steep landscape exacerbates the severity of the mountain fire scenario. Following the start of the mountain fire, the flames will warm the combustibles uphill, hastening the spread of flames. Fire spread will accelerate exponentially as the slope rises.
Tackling climate change
What are Chongqing’s effective measures?
Zero carbon action 1
Continued reductions in carbon emission intensity
In Chongqing, the shift from an “industrial economy” to a “service-oriented economy” has been accelerated. The figures show that over the period of the 13th Five-Year Plan, Chongqing's carbon intensity decreased by 21.9% and its energy intensity by 19.4%, exceeding the plan’s mandatory reduction in carbon intensity. This was done under the guidance of carbon emission peak and neutrality.
Zero carbon action 2
Optimisation and improvement of carbon market mechanism
Chongqing was selected as one of the pilot provinces and cities participating in the national emissions trading scheme (ETS) as early as 2014, and the year 2021 also marked a turning point for the Chongqing carbon trading market, with the city’s yearly carbon trading volume rocketing from ranked poorly to second nationally and its annual compliance rate rising from 60% to 95%.
Zero carbon action 3
Continued Diversification of Green Finance
The first Pilot Climate Investment and Financing Program is the Western Climate Investment and Financing Industry Promotion Center in Chongqing.To lower carbon emissions, Chongqing issued 34 new loans totalling 865 million yuan for 16 enterprises in the first quarter of 2022. Sixteen of the projects recommended by the centre have already received funding from financial institutions, totalling 1.234 billion yuan in loans. The investment has resulted in 90 projects with a total economic value of 40 billion yuan, reducing 350,000 tons of carbon emissions.
Zero carbon action 4
The practice of lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets
The carbon credit platform was established due to the internet plus and ecological product value notions. In 2021, the carbon trading market in Chongqing enjoyed tremendous growth, with the annual carbon trading volume moving from the bottom of the national ranking to second and the yearly compliance rate moving from 60% to 95%. During 2019, 50 additional registered companies and 8 recorded projects have been added to the carbon credit platform. In total, the platform has reduced emissions by about 1.55 million tonnes. The emission units in the Chongqing carbon market have made 16 compliance payments. There have been carbon-neutral registrations. A total of 62.22 million RMB and 2843 tons of carbon were traded.
Zero carbon life
i2Cool stays with Chongqing
The temperature causes individuals to feel sweltering and uneasy. For the citizens of Chongqing, the “City of Furnaces,” this presents a significant difficulty. It is now challenging for Chongqing to maintain comfort while lowering energy use and carbon emissions.
i2Cool offers solutions for the city as a company developing electricity-free cooling technology. Inspired by Saharan silver ants, the i2Cool team has developed an environmentally friendly, cutting-edge technology. It effectively reflects 95% of sunlight and radiation and radiates heat in the mid-infrared range to space. With no energy or refrigerant required, an outstanding cooling effect can be obtained. It can complement Chongqing's low-carbon, zero-energy green building idea by offering a more environmentally friendly cooling solution for the general public and reducing energy consumption and the environmental impact of conventional cooling systems. The technique has been adopted and promoted throughout many cities and regions in Hong Kong, the Chinese mainland and Southeast Asia to conserve energy and protect the environment.
The objective of I2Cool is to develop eco-friendly and energy efficient Zero Carbon products to achieve dual carbon innovation development. We will maintain the leading technology in the sector and advance the carbon peak and carbon neutrality objective through ongoing autonomous technological innovation. Let’s anticipate additional technological advancements to make Chongqing a smarter, cosier, and more livable city.