November 15, 2009

In September 2007, the Department of Energy of the United States and the National Development and Reform Commission of China signed the Memorandum of Understanding for Cooperation on Industrial Energy Efficiency;

On the fifth Strategic Economic Dialogue in December 2008, the United States and China agreed to include energy efficiency as an area of cooperation through the U.S.-China Framework for the Ten Year Cooperation on Energy and Environment (hereinafter referred to as the “TYF”);

In July 2009 the Department of Energy of the United States and the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of China signed the Memorandum of Understanding for Cooperation in Energy Efficient Buildings and Communities;

In December 2008 the Export-Import Bank and Trade and Development Agency of the United States and the National Development and Reform Commission and the Export-Import Bank of China signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Areas of Energy Conservation and Environmental Protection, and in July 2009, the Export-Import Banks of both countries agreed on the Implementation Plan for Energy Efficiency and Environmental Exports;

In November 2009, the governments of both countries signed the Memorandum of Understanding to Enhance Cooperation on Climate Change, Energy and Environment (hereinafter referred to as the “MOU”), which identifies “energy conservation and energy efficiency” as a key area for cooperation where the joint expertise, resources, research capacity and combined market size of the United States and China can make an important contribution to addressing shared challenges of energy security, climate change and environmental protection;

Building on the above agreements, relevant departments of the United States and China (as defined in Section III) have agreed on the following Energy Efficiency Action Plan under the TYF:

I. PURPOSE

Both sides recognize that improving energy efficiency in the industry, buildings and communities, and consumer products through energy efficient technologies and policies will reduce energy expenditures for households, businesses and government agencies, enhance energy security and protect the environment, and create new sources of economic growth and job creation.

As such, both sides resolve to launch a comprehensive program of policy and technical cooperation, coordinated through the TYF, to accelerate the development and adoption of energy efficiency solutions in the United States and China.

II. AREAS OF COOPERATION

Both sides intend to prioritize cooperation in, but not limited to, the following areas, subject to the availability of resources.

1) Policy and finance dialogue: The two sides intend to share experience on how government policy and commercial finance can effectively enhance energy efficiency in industry, buildings and consumer products..

2) Industrial energy efficiency auditing: The two sides intend to exchange information on existing methodologies, practices, and case studies related to energy efficiency audits of energy-intensive enterprises (including iron and steel, chemicals and building materials) and small- and medium-sized enterprises, cooperate in the development and localization of energy efficiency auditing tools, and conduct joint energy efficiency audits of select energy-intensive enterprises to demonstrate these tools.

3) Industrial energy efficiency benchmarking: The two sides intend to develop methodologies for conducting comparative analyses of the energy efficiency levels in energy-intensive industries and promote energy conservation through energy efficiency benchmarking, identification of energy-saving opportunities, and exploring the use of energy efficiency labeling or rating systems in both Chinese and U.S. manufacturing facilities.

4) Building codes, labels and rating systems: The two sides intend to share experiences and collaborate on energy-related building codes, incentive policies, green building standards and labeling systems, and systems and tools for rating and labeling energy efficiency in buildings.

5) Consumer product testing and labeling: The two sides seek to harmonize test procedures, performance metrics and verification systems for energy efficient consumer products and exchange experience in promoting these products to the public.

6) Personnel training: The two sides intend to cooperate in training local government officials, urban planners, enterprise managers, and energy efficiency management and technology professionals to increase energy savings in buildings and communities, industries and consumer products.

7) Demonstration projects: The two sides intend to identify opportunities to jointly demonstrate energy efficient building, urban planning and enterprise management practices and advanced energy efficiency technologies for industry and buildings.

8) Trade and investment promotion: The two sides seek to expand bilateral trade and investment in energy efficient consumer products and energy efficiency technologies.

III. ORGANIZATION AND IMPLEMENTATION

A. Energy Efficiency Task Force

Cooperation under this Action Plan is organized and coordinated by an Energy Efficiency Task Force created under the TYF. The Task Force is expected to meet at least twice per year to assess the progress of cooperative activities described in Section IV and develop additional energy conservation and energy efficiency programs and projects as needed. The Task Force consists of the following ministries and government agencies and will report to the TYF Joint Working Group on a regular basis.

In the United States of America:

  • Department of Energy (co-chair)
  • Environmental Protection Agency (co-chair)
  • Department of State
  • Department of Commerce
  • Department of Treasury
  • Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
  • Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
  • The Export-Import Bank of the U.S.
  • U.S. Trade and Development Agency

In the People’s Republic of China:

  • National Development and Reform Commission (Chair)
  • Ministry of Industry and Information Technology
  • Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development
  • General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine
  • Ministry of Finance
  • Ministry of Science and Technology
  • State Electricity Regulatory Commission
  • Ministry of Commerce
  • Ministry of Environmental Protection
  • National Energy Administration
  • The Export-Import Bank of China

B. Energy Efficiency Advisory Group

An Energy Efficiency Advisory Group is created to support the work of the Energy Efficiency Task Force, composed of representatives from government, industry, academia and civil society. The Advisory Group’s task is to identify and recommend specific programs and projects for the two sides to pursue jointly and provide input into the Task Force’s policy and financing discussions. The Advisory Group is divided into three panels, each of which would consist of six U.S. and six Chinese representatives: a) green buildings and communities, b) industrial energy efficiency, c) consumer products. Each side will select their Advisory Group memberships according to their own criteria.

C. Sub-national Cooperation

Both the MOU and the TYF emphasize the importance of sub-national cooperation, whether state-to-province, city-to-city, or at the academic, business or civil society level. The two sides seek to encourage sub-national cooperation in energy efficiency, particularly through the EcoPartnerships Framework under the TYF. Energy efficiency cooperation through the TYF Framework should be subject to the guidance and supervision of the Energy Efficiency Task Force.

D. Funding and Staffing

Each side intends to designate a specific ministry or government agency, and identify specific personnel within that ministry or government agency, to coordinate the work of the Energy Efficiency Action Plan and report progress on each program or project to the Energy Efficiency Task Force on a regular basis. Funding for each program or project will be determined on a case-by-case basis, subject to the availability of resources on both sides.

IV. Programs and Actions

Cooperative activities of the Energy Efficiency Task Force will be implemented through the following programs and actions to improve energy conservation and energy efficiency in buildings and communities, industry and consumer products in both countries. This Action Plan is intended to be a living document and will be expanded to incorporate further detail and additional cooperative activities as they are identified and agreed to by both sides.

Energy Efficiency Forum: Both sides intend to establish the U.S.-China Energy Efficiency Forum, modeled after the U.S.-China Oil and Gas Industry Forum, to be held once a year alternating between the United States and China. The Energy Efficiency Forum will serve as a platform for policy-makers in both countries to share experience and best practices in promoting energy efficiency in buildings and communities, industry and consumer products, and for the Advisory Group to meet and share their recommendations with the Task Force. As a public-private partnership, the Energy Efficiency Forum will bring together industry representatives from both countries to unlock commercial opportunities in energy efficiency while meeting energy and environmental goals.

Timeline: The first Energy Efficiency Forum will be held in 2010, and will continue every year thereafter unless both sides determine otherwise.

Mayors Sustainable Cities Program: Both sides intend to establish the Mayors Sustainable Cities Program (MSCP), a comprehensive training and exchange program for mayors in both countries to promote sustainable urban development. Through the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development’s Mayors Training Center in Beijing, and the U.S. Department of Energy in Washington, both sides intend to arrange exchange tours and seminars for groups of 10-20 mayors focused on sustainable urban planning, green buildings and other topics. In addition to building capacity at the city level directly, the Program is intended to promote ongoing city-to-city relationships, including through the EcoPartnerships Framework.

Timeline: Both sides intend to establish the Program during the first half of 2010 with the goal of arranging the first exchange tour during the second half of the year. Both sides intend to arrange one delegation of Chinese mayors to visit the U.S. and one delegation of U.S. mayors to visit China each year thereafter, with supporting preparatory workshops and seminars in each country as needed.

Buildings Codes, Labels and Rating Systems: Both sides intend to exchange experiences learned from the development of each country’s energy-related building code programs, including the periodic review and amendment process, effective enforcement mechanisms and the implementation of performance-based incentive policies that encourage energy-efficiency levels beyond the requirements of the building code.

Both sides also intend to exchange experiences and best practices with respect to green building standards and labeling systems and energy efficiency rating and labeling systems, including market-based third-party rating systems. Both sides will seek to harmonize building energy labeling and rating standards in order to facilitate the bilateral comparison of building performance improvement in each country. Further, both sides intend to collaborate on the development and application of building energy simulation tools, as well as standards for such tools, that are or may become the basis of rating and labeling systems.

Both sides will also facilitate training for policy makers and energy efficiency professionals in building design, code development and enforcement, and building rating and labeling systems through the Mayors Training Center in Beijing, and the Department of Energy in Washington. .

Timeline: Both sides intend to develop a work program in the first half of 2010, with input from the Advisory Group, and begin cooperative activities during the second half of 2010. The work program will be described in this Action Plan once developed and agreed by both sides.

Industrial Energy Efficiency Auditing and Benchmarking: Both sides intend to promote energy savings in industry in both countries through industrial energy efficiency audits and industrial energy efficiency benchmarking. Both sides intend to exchange information on existing methodologies, practices, and case studies related to energy efficiency audits of energy-intensive enterprises (including iron and steel, chemicals and building materials), focusing on the experiences of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Save Energy Now energy assessments and China’s Top-1000 Enterprises Program. Both sides intend to further exchange information between the U.S. Department of Energy’s Industrial Assessment Centers and China’s provincial energy conservation centers related to existing methodologies, practices, and case studies for small- and medium-sized enterprises. Both sides intend to work together to develop new or adapt existing energy assessment tools for use in large as well as small- and medium-sized enterprises. Both sides also intend to demonstrate these tools by conducting joint energy efficiency audits of select energy-intensive enterprises in China.

Both sides intend to study on methodologies for conducting comparative analyses of the energy-efficiency levels in energy-intensive industries, defining common boundaries, conversion factors, and metrics for making comparisons. Energy efficiency will be promoted by benchmarking facilities as well as identifying energy-saving opportunities through the use of check-lists or as a result of energy efficiency audits. Further both sides intend to explore the use of energy-efficiency labeling or rating systems for industrial equipment, looking to the U.S. Department of Energy Quick Plant Energy Profiler/Integrated Tool Suite, Steam System Tool Suite, Air Master and Motor Master as examples, as well as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star for Industry rating system and the experience with energy efficiency labeling for industries in Suzhou, China.

Timeline: Both sides intend to develop a work program in the first half of 2010, with input from the Advisory Group, and begin cooperative activities during the second half of 2010. The work program will be described in this Action Plan once developed and agreed by both sides.

Energy Efficient Consumer Products: Both sides intend to harmonize relevant test procedures and performance metrics for a number of agreed upon products, and collaborate on creating country relevant product verification systems to ensure compliance in voluntary labeling initiatives and enhance consumer and stakeholder confidence in labels. The workgroup will exchange best practices in labeling and promoting energy efficient consumer products.

Timeline: Both sides intend to develop a work program for cooperation on energy efficiency standards and testing methodologies, product verification systems for voluntary labeling programs, and exchanges on promotional mechanisms for energy efficient products during the first half of 2010 and begin cooperative activities during the second half of the year.

Trade and Investment Promotion: The two sides will cooperate in promoting bilateral trade and investment in energy efficiency technology. The U.S. Export-Import Bank will seek to identify U.S. providers of such technology and export opportunities that are eligible for Export-Import Bank support. The U.S. Export-Import Bank also intends to work with China’s Export-Import Bank to facilitate financing of qualified U.S. exports, and promote bilateral trade through seminars held in conjunction with the annual Energy Efficiency Forum. To further promote bilateral trade and investment in the areas of energy efficiency, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency intends to make available funding for assistance in energy efficiency project/investment planning, including feasibility studies, technical assistance, workshops and orientation visits and will work with U.S. companies to support a range of activities through the newly formed public-private Energy Cooperation Program (ECP).

Timeline: USTDA and the U.S. Export-Import Bank’s energy efficiency work under this Action Plan will begin in 2010. During the first half of 2010, both sides will identify additional strategies to promote bilateral trade and investment that can be included as part of this cooperation and begin implementing these strategies in the second half of the year.

[This is a mobile copy of Energy Efficiency Action Plan ]