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A group of Chinese environmental officials have visited Auckland recently to learn more about New Zealand’s ecolabelling scheme.

Hosted by New Zealand’s government-owned ecolabel, Environmental Choice New Zealand (ECNZ), the five-strong party included members of China’s ecolabelling authority, the China Environmental United Certification Centre (CEC) led by a senior official from the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP).

ECNZ General Manager Francesca Lipscombe says the visit was a strong endorsement for the local ecolabel.  

“CEC were impressed by what they’d heard about our systems and processes and wanted to take a closer look. 

“It’s a great opportunity for us to develop our relationship with CEC further and find ways we can support each other in the promotion of sustainable production and consumption – which is one of the key UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

“And given the growing importance of New Zealand’s trade with China, sharing our knowledge in this area is a very valuable development,” says Ms Lipscombe.

The VIPs spent two days in the city discussing opportunities for mutual co-operation between the two ecolabels, which are both members of the Global Ecolabelling Network (GEN), she says.   “That would include mutual recognition of labels and the development of common core criteria for ecolabel standards.”

The trip included site visits to ECNZ licensee Cottonsoft and Croxley, including a tour of Croxley’s recycling operation in New Lynn, as well as a workshop on specification development with environmental consultancy Tonkin & Taylor. 

The visiting officials: 
1.    Deputy Director of the Environmental Development Centre (EDC) of MEP Zhou Nengfu 
2.    Director of Standard Review and Registration Department of Environmental Certification     Centre of MEP Yan Yuping.
3.    CEC Deputy General Manager Chen Yiqun.
4.    CEC Deputy Director of Climate Change Department Zhou Caihua.
5.    CEC R&D Department International Cooperation Assistant Qi Ran.

Photo: The visit included a tour of Croxley’s recycling plant in New Lynn. Croxley Recycling Manager Wayne Grieve (right) explains the recycling process around used printed circuit boards to (from left) ECNZ General Manager Francesca Lipscombe, and Chinese ecolabelling delegation members Qi Ran, Chen Yiqun, Zhou Caihua, and Zhou Nengfu.

Glenn Baker

Glenn is a professional writer/editor with 50-plus years’ experience across radio, television and magazine publishing.


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