China’s ‘Green’ Highway the Way to the Future

As the number of vehicles on the roads continues to increase, China is improving some of its road and traffic infrastructure to ease congestion and address greenhouse gas emissions. Zhuang Pinghui at South China Morning Post reports the completion of a section of the country’s first low-carbon highway, which is due to connect Chongqing and Chengdu by the end of the year:

The Ministry of Transport said it was a pilot for low-carbon construction projects, one of six low-carbon energy-saving highways. Another in Yunnan will be 105.7 kilometres long and span from the county of Daguan to Ludian in Zhaotong . It is expected to be completed in 2015.

[…] Ke Linchun, deputy director of policies and regulations at the Transport Ministry, told a conference last year that low-carbon highways were the way of the future.

He said the concept of lowering carbon dioxide emissions would be implemented in road planning, design, construction, operations and maintenance.

[…] The reduced distance between Chongqing and Chengdu on the new highway is expected to cut fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, according to authorities, who predict that 506,200 tonnes of fuel will be saved by 2033. [Source]

Pollution is forcing Chinese leaders to tackle climate change through programs such as the carbon tax initiative, but serious obstacles to environmental progress remain. Read more CDT coverage of pollution in China.