China is striving to achieve a new balance between traditional and renewable resources. Richard Li does some digging for the relevant legal and business concerns
The beginnings of a change of tack that may be of epic proportions is showing an increasing influence over China’s mining and energy needs. An insatiable appetite for coal and oil has always held sway, needed to feed the industrial maw of manufacturing from the raw materials that Chinese mining giants have extracted from pits and shafts around the world.
The end product of all this activity has left a nation choking under pollution. “For the scarcity of fossil fuels and the consequent environmental pollution, China is rapidly developing renewable/clean energy with a series of favourable policies, in the hope that its current resource consumption dominated by traditional resources can be transferred as early as possible to be dominated by renewable/clean energy,” says Wang Jihong, the executive partner at Grandway Law Offices in Beijing.
Changes in policy are none too soon and this sea change is producing a new desire to lead global competition in renewable energy technologies. Interests in solar and wind technology are being pursued with particular zeal. But will this trend last? And what about the future of traditional mining and energy interests?