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International Synergies assists Wuhan in integrating Industrial Symbiosis in their strategic Urban Development plans

International Synergies (ISL) kicked off the New year with some interesting projects. Ian Humphrey, Director of Operations at ISL, visited Wuhan, China for the 2nd time from the 9th-13th of January.

International Synergies is part of the “Driving the low carbon transition through cross-industry waste utilization in infrastructure delivery in Wuhan, Hubei” project which is led by the Foreign and Commonwealth office.

A need for the project arose from the sustainability issues attached to Wuhan’s “Strategic Plan for Integrated Urban Development”, as it includes mega infrastructure projects. Industrial symbiosis was highlighted as a solution to these issues. If integrated into infrastructure investments, there will be a reduction in both carbon emissions and the demand on virgin resources, while reducing cost.

The project will focus on policy engagement with Wuhan DRC to elevate the discussion to a strategic level through the government planning process. The project’s main aim is to develop a roadmap to deliver a minimum of 200,000 tonnes of landfill diversion with associated 20,000 tonnes per annum (tpa) of CO2 emissions avoided. This outcome will provide substantially greater and longer term carbon reduction than a one-off purchase of carbon credits in the market.

Using our international infrastructure expertise, International Synergies will work with Wuhan DRC and Wuhan University of Science and Technology (WUST), to produce the following outputs:

  • A set of policy recommendations to Wuhan DRC that incentivise better circular economy practice and a lower carbon foot-print in Wuhan’s construction industry.
  • A prioritised map of the potential to reduce carbon (and cost) while delivering the infrastructure identified in the Wuhan 2017 plan (metros, airports, roads, and buildings)
  • An analysis of where existing policy enables or creates barriers to this low-carbon delivery through industrial symbiosis (for example, current policy precludes the substitution of used solvents as fuel in the cement industry, yet this replaces virgin fossil fuel use)

The purpose of Ian’s visit was for the following reasons:

  • Meet key stakeholders in regional government (Wuhan DRC and Wuhan URCC) to present on policy recommendations for construction activities;
  • Visiting Hubei Emission Exchange Centre to present on ISL’s experience of working with Industrial Parks and share knowledge and experience in this area; and,
  • Visiting Wuhan Circular Economy Research Institute to present on the Wuhan project and talk about potential collaboration.