AgentInternational

China becomes icon of sustainable design

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

The Chinese are environmental cretins, right? It's a common perception, one that our own moribund leaders are only too happy to encourage. After all, the worse China's environmental policies look, the better ours look. The only problem is, this stereotype is baloney. As inconceivable as it seems to Americans, our government's dawdling on environmental issues and its susceptibility to industry lobbies has in fact put China's environmental efforts on track to surpass our own. I first visited China in 1994, when the nation was already booming, but well before it seemed a likely rival for the omnipotent United States. Yet even at that time, the Chinese were taking the first steps toward sustainable development. All commercial buildings and most homes were already illuminated by compact fluorescent bulbs, while many new apartment complexes boasted conspicuous arrays of solar hot water boosters on their roofs. As an ancient mercantile culture, the Chinese rationale behind em...