China’s mandatory energy conservation target-setting policy for large energy users, known as the Top-10,000 programme was introduced in 2011, as an expansion of its successful predecessor, the Top 1,000 programme which operated between 2006 and 2010. The Top-10,000 programme now covers two thirds of China's total energy consumption and aims to save 250 million tonne of coal equivalent (tce) by 2015, contributing to 37% of the total national energy saving target in the 12th Five Year Plan (FYP). In November 2012, China’s government officially mandated provinces to implement energy management programs (EnMPs) targeting companies covered in the Top-10,000 programme.
Under a contract signed with the government, participants in the Top-10,000 Programme are required to meet certain energy saving targets and implement energy management through activities including establishing energy measurement and management systems, submitting regular energy use audits and developing energy conservation plans.
Overall, the response from enterprises is generally positive, with strong commitment to achieving energy saving targets through a process that provides clear measures, guidance and supporting tools.
Accredited certification agencies are responsible for the validity of EnMS certification as well as to continuously improve the quality of their services to enterprises at a reasonable cost. Industrial associations provide enterprises with technical support for EnMS implementation.
From government: The Ministry of Finance supports enterprises to take energy conservation measures and implement certain technologies (MOF and NDRC, 2007) and also finances 22 provinces’ energy conservation supervision centres (Qi et al., 2013). Local government is encouraged to set aside specific budgets (NDRC, 2006a); From enterprises: In 2007: Enterprises invested over USD 7.5 billion in technology innovation, implementing over 8,000 projects. In 2008: Enterprises invested USD 13.5 billion in energy-saving technical renovations and implemented about 3,000 energy-saving technical renovation projects (IIP, 2012).
Between 2005–2010: Industrial enterprises’ energy conservation investment of technology and equipment upgrade totalled USD 92.6 billion, four times that of the previous five years, of which the 1,000 Programme enterprises invested approximately 40 % (Qi et al., 2013); From the banks: Companies included in the programmes are contributing to national and local government energy saving activity, hence it is easier for them to apply for bank loans (Zhao Xudong interview, 2014).
- National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and its Resource Conservation and Environmental Protection department;
- National Bureau of Statistics (NBS);
- Certification and Accreditation Administration of the People’s Republic of China (CNCA);
- China National Institute for Standardization (CNIS);
- Stateowned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC);
- Office of National Energy Leading Group; General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (GAQSIQ);
- Provincial and local governments at all levels as well as their energy conservation authorities (local energy conservation supervision and/or technical centres, ECCs/ETCs).