IRENA to work with Chinese city for low-carbon Winter Olympics

Agreement will support Zhangjiakou’s establishment of low-carbon Olympic zone

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) will provide a renewable energy roadmap that will support the city of Zhangjiakou in delivering a low-carbon Winter Olympics in 2022. IRENA signed a cooperation agreement with the government of the Hebei Province in China, which will ultimately see the Olympic centre and Olympic stadiums powered by renewable energy.

The agreement was signed by IRENA director-general Adnan Z Amin and the governor of Hebei Province, Xu Qin. Through this deal, Zhangjiakou will also become the China’s first energy transition pilot city. Additionally, IRENA says it will provide strategic advice for the development of an International Center for Renewable Energy Industry Innovation in Zhangjiakou.

“China has made remarkable progress in the pursuit of renewable energy and in the transition towards a modern energy system. The pursuit of a low-carbon Winter Olympics in 2022 will not only support China’s ambition to lower harmful emissions but it will also see them pioneer a movement towards the cost-effective decarbonisation of the world’s greatest spectacles. This agreement reflects the agency’s deepening cooperation with China and will facilitate a positive, two-way exchange of expertise and knowledge,” commented Amin.

Zhangjiakou aims to generate 50% of its power from renewable sources by 2020. As co-hosts of the 2022 Winter Olympics with Beijing, the city was identified as having a strong renewable energy resource endowment, with significant wind, solar and biomass potential.

Qin added, “President Xi Jinping’s strategic vision for an ecological civilisation has significantly advanced environmental protection in China, greatly benefiting Chinese people whilst representing China’s contribution to global green development. Hebei Province will realise the vision proposed by President Xi, by prioritising ecological protection and exercising green development, as we expedite the speed at which we build a beautiful Hebei.”

According to IRENA, China chaired its 14th and 15th council meetings and is president of the agency’s ninth meeting of the assembly in January next year.

“With abundant renewable energy resources – particularly the area of Zhangjiakou City – the potential of this cooperation with IRENA is broad and bright. As both sides work to advance R&D, technology innovation and the broader development of the renewable energy industry, this will support our planning for a low-carbon Winter Olympic Games,” explained Qin.


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