DotGreen has hosted People & Planet events alongside the past four ICANN meetings, as a way to inform our guests, who appreciate the green efforts occurring locally in regions around the world. In April, the ICANN Beijing meeting was a particularly exciting location for discovering the innovation and passion behind green organizations in China.
60 guests from 19 countries started the day with a visit to Parkview Green, a unique and intriguing commercial complex with impressive energy conservation measures. Here, we learned about how the sustainable technologies and materials used resulted in a 50% reduction in energy usage for buildings of that size. Parkview Green is the first integrated commercial project to be awarded LEED Green Building Rating System Platinum pre-certification and has set the bar high for new development in Beijing. The Parkview Green is a family owned and run business.
Our journey then took us by two coaches in a convoy beyond the city center to the village of Mutianyu at the base of the Great Wall. We spent time at the impressive Schoolhouse at Mutianyu, a community center and sustainable tourism facility that was founded by husband and wife team Jim Spear and Liang Tang. Their sustainable tourism enterprise has grown to include three restaurants, an art glass studio, a gallery, a unique resort comprised of rental homes dispersed across two villages, and an eco-retreat designed by Spear. Their efforts have boosted the local economy, provided a sustainable tourism approach for their community, and have set an example for others including the Chinese government, who approached them to learn from their model as a means to boosting the economies of nearby districts.
From the Schoolhouse, delegates enjoyed a sustainable tour of Mutianyu, to learn more about the village, the people, and their greening efforts as a community. A scenic “chair lift” brought the guests up the side of the Great Wall, to enjoy a locally sourced organic picnic lunch where they heard from local experts about sustainable agricultural development in China, and the innovation and value provided by groups like Shared Harvest and Smart Agriculture Analytics.
Dr. Shen Li, professor and LOHAS leader, spoke about his experience with changing sustainability attitudes and procedures in China. He expressed his belief about a brighter future in sustainability and environmental protection in his country. The Great Wall in the background provided an interesting backdrop to learn about China’s advancements in the green sector.
The village of Mutianyu and the Great Wall took us back in time. We felt the history of the country and it’s people. The group had plenty of personal time to explore the Great Wall and enjoy the natural surroundings on the outskirts of Beijing. The popular descent from the Great Wall was by toboggan – click to enjoy the ride courtesy of DotGreen’s guest Bill Doshier.