Sonderborg agreement opens Green Chinese doors

On behalf of Sonderborg and ProjectZero, Peter Rathje, Director of ProjectZero has signed one of ten EU-China agreements about urban cooperation in Beijing. Danish minister Carsten Hansen participated in the EU-China urbanisation conference and emphasised Sonderborg’s climate endeavours. This agreement will pave the way for export of Danish technologies and consulting to China.

The Danish Ministry of Housing, Urban and Rural Affairs states in a press release that Sonderborg enters the international political scene with this agreement. At the conference, ten EU-China agreements were signed – of which Haiyan-Sonderborg was one of them. The cooperation with Haiyan commenced in May 2013 with support from the Danfoss Company. Politicians and civil servants from Haiyan visited Sonderborg to be inspired by the ambitious thinking of including climate in the future urban development. Haiyan wants among other things to develop a ”Denmark ZERO Carbon Street” with approx. 75,000 m2 buildings with the best green, Danish technologies. This project opens the opportunity to export technology and consulting. The area corresponds to the Gehry Habour project in Sonderborg.

It makes me extremely proud and happy that we have been spotted and appreciated by other nations as a climate frontrunner. It is huge to be on the platform at a conference of this calibre. China is an enormous market and when they roll up the sleeves to solve the CO2 challenge with respect to the environment, we must be ready to strike. This was the goal when we went to China last year with a Sonderborg delegation, and I hope that our companies will utilise the opportunity to export counselling and technology as this is what it is all about; in parallel that we create growth and green jobs”, says Aase Nyegaard, Mayor of Sonderborg.

From Beijing, Peter Rathje informs that the attention on Sonderborg has been really unique – not at least because of the complimentary publicity by the Danish minister. Also the broad agenda in ProjectZero that builds on involvement of citizens, schools and industry in the green changeover and the achieved results have attracted great interest. “Haiyan’s ambition is to become the leading Chinese role model in the climate area based on our model”, he says.

Haiyan’s interest in Sonderborg is partly due to the ProjectZero project and partly due to the close contact to the Sonderborg area through its cooperation with Danfoss. Danfoss has just expanded with two new production plants in Haiyan that has approx. half a million citizens.

Christian Overgaard, President in Danfoss China says: “We are happy to have been able to path the way for the agreement between Sonderborg and Haiyan. The project is one of the ten best urban projects between Europe and China and it has attracted international attention. Specifically this means that the experiences from Sonderborg, ProjectZero and the involved companies will be used to make the development of Haiyan as sustainable as possible and we are pleased to contribute with our expertise within energy efficient and climate solutions".

For further information, please contact the project manager in Sonderborg Municipality, Poul Valdemar Nielsen, telephone +45 5050 1445.

14. November 2013