National Roundtables

Chinese Roundtables on SCP
Beijing, China

May 2006, June 2008 and November 2009

The Chinese National Roundtables on SCP have identified, in the overall framework of promoting SCP in China, four priority areas as key challenges to be addressed with reference to China's needs and EU experiences:

  • Promoting green/sustainable public procurement
  • Improving the eco-efficiency of the seven most polluting and energy and resource consuming industry sectors (chemical, steel, cement/building materials, paper, coal, electricity, light industries)
  • Improving waste management focusing on waste prevention and minimization, re-using and re-cycling
  • Promoting sustainable construction and building
Arab Hoballah, Head of the DTIE SCP Branch during the opening session of the Chinese National Roundtable in 2006

The events were co-organized by UNEP and the Sino-Japan Friendship Centre for Environmental Protection (EDC), sponsored by the European Commission (EC), UNEP and the State Environmental Protection Administration of China (SEPA).


3rd Chinese Roundable on Sustainable Consumption and Production (CRSCP): Beijing, China - November 14th 2009

Sustainable Products and Life Cycle Communication in Business and Industry

The 3rd Chinese Roundtable focused on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Management (LCM) for Sustainable Consumption and Production in China. LCA and LCM are essential approaches for the realisation of sustainable consumption and production patterns, and they are furthermore increasingly important business management approaches that can be used by all types of businesses to improve their products, the sustainability performance of their companies and associated value chains.

The Roundtable was organised by UNEP DTIE (Division of Technology, Industry and Economics), the Environment Directorate-General of the European Commission, Tsinghua University and Sichuan University

Over forty participants attended the meeting, representing international organizations, Chinese national and local government agencies, Chinese companies from different industry sectors including minerals & metals, building & construction and ICT, and research institutes, from China and overseas.

Several conclusions and recommendations were put forward:

  • Recommendations for the Chinese government included designing policy tools considering life cycle thinking and based on scientific LCA. The development and implementation of relevant policies and economic instruments was recommended, in particular for the support of green companies through subsidies and tax breaks in order to catalyze resources for SCP. Government can also play a facilitating role for increasing the availability of green credits.

  • Company representatives stressed the importance of promoting Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Management (LCM) in specific industry sectors. Life Cycle Assessment committees should be set up in relevant industry associations and promote LCA and LCM sector wide.

  • Independent third party verification systems, coupled by the enforcement of policies and regulations will be needed to achieve shifts to create stable markets for sustainable products and to ensure consumer trust in environmental declaration systems.

  • It is important to improve the reliability of LCA data and establish recognized international guidance so that policy decisions for industrial development can be made based on LCA (e.g. on business cases).

  • More communication and exchange opportunities to promote database development, such as expert training and workshops, are required.

  • Increased international cooperation for technology transfer and capacity building, including 'soft skills', such as knowledge of how to use LCA software applications.In terms of international cooperation, both north-south and south-south cooperation are needed, as the experiences from both developed and developing countries are useful. Capacity building through UNEP and EU initiatives for LCA and LCM are very welcome (e.g. the SWITCH Asia Programme) and need to be strengthened to promote implementation of SCP beyond the circular economy approach in China.

  • Existing organizations operating in China, such as the UNEP/UNESCAP Asia Pacific Regional Helpdesk for SCP, based in Beijing, should be used to promote life cycle approaches and support capacity building for industry sectors to effectively apply LCA and LCM. Furthermore, the SCP Helpdesk can be used to facilitate promotion of LCA and LCM throughout the Asian region.

  • Agenda 3rd Chinese Roundtable
  • Background document
  • Meeting Report

Synthesis Report of the Roundtables in China and India