Industrial symbiosis an eco friendly realm
HOW a miraculous eco transformation came into existence in China? This is a frequently asked question. In fact China promoted industrial development through the concept of eco friendly Industrial symbiosis. In symbiotic industrial collaboration there is a physical exchange of materials and by-products, as well as shared management of infrastructure for water, energy and waste. To achieve Industrial Symbiosis China has implemented eco-industrial park (EIP) initiatives as a mainstream strategy of a circular economy since the turn of the new century.
China had around 300 national industrial parks, including 210 ETDAs (Economic and Technological Development Areas) and 113 HTPs (High-Tech Parks)and recently, a great number of success stories regarding industrial symbiosis have emerged in which one industry output benefits another.
An eco-industrial park is a community of manufacturing and service businesses located together on a common property. Member businesses seek enhanced environmental, economic, and social performance through collaboration in managing environmental and resource issues. By working together, the community of businesses seeks a collective benefit that is greater than the sum of individual benefits each company would realize by only optimizing its individual performance. The central theme of Industrial Symbiosis is utilizing the output of one industry as a feedstock of another. The aim here is to maximize the utilization of waste products of each individual unit in the zone with the goal of promoting greener production of goods.
Environmentally-friendly production has been fully integrated in the recently introduced concept of eco-industrial parks. An eco-industrial park (EIP) is basically one where industries, businesses and local community cooperate with one another, thereby reducing waste and pollution by efficiently sharing resources. All this helps to achieve sustainable development and environment friendly production of goods.
EIPs act as an innovation platform for environmental management, including master planning, industrial layout, environmental risk control, environmental performance reporting, All of which leads to the transition of the environmental management of industrial parks from the end-of-pipe treatment paradigm to a more system-oriented one.
Company to company exchanges is only one part of an integrated system for recovering wasted resources and reusing them at highest value. A strong cluster of resource recovery and recycling companies, an effective coordination agency or company, company eco-industrial networks, research and development, and financing are other essential parts of this system. In addition, cleaner production within facilities must precede end-ofpipe recovery to optimize utilization of resources in the production process.
An Eco-Industrial Park will achieve profitable return on investment while demonstrating an environmentally and socially sound form of industrial real estate development. This model of industrial development will be a major hub for sustainable regional development.
The original inspiration was the case of Kalundborg in Denmark, where materials, energy, and water exchanges evolved among a group of companies in a region and their host community. Here a large power plant's outputs was the basis for a series of inter-firm deals to utilize by-products economically among a refinery, a wallboard company, a pharmaceutical company, a fish farm, and community district heating. In China the Guangxi Guitang Group is a notable example of using sugar production by-products, first within a single cityowned company, and then in a broader network including other sugar producers in the city of Guitang and the farmers growing cane. This success was possible because the first investments in infrastructure and plants were all within a single corporate group, not between separate firms.