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  Field Trip November 2006      LINKS            

Field report by Zhang Bo, Bayer Young Environmental Envoy 2006, from China
Into the West
In ancient times, Sage Xuan Zang went west to India in pursuit of true lection. Today, only four of us Chinese university students are provided with such a precious opportunity to visit Bayer AG in Leverkusen. We were listening, observing and thinking deeply during this short stay.
48 Young Environmental Envoys from 16 countries were Bayer's guests for a week. Among them Zhang Bo from China, 3. row, 2 from right. They were welcomed in Leverkusen by Bayer Board member Dr. Wolfgang Plischke.
48 Young Environmental Envoys from 16 countries were Bayer's guests for a week. Among them Zhang Bo from China, 3. row, 2 from right. They were welcomed in Leverkusen by Bayer Board member Dr. Wolfgang Plischke.
As the first private enterprise establishing global partnership with United Nations Environment Programs (UNEP), Bayer is a global model for environmental protection. From source control to end management of pollutant, everything enables me to have a new understanding towards environmental protection: it is believed by Bayer that the products should be able to be disposed safely at last, and the production is determined by disposal, e.g., environmental-friendly material is adopted for raw material of the products; safe filling is adopted for the maleficent industrial solid waste. The landfill of Bayer is open to the public, which will receive a batch of solid waste from Austria recently, and this kind of openness also reflects the social responsibility of Bayer. We harvested a lot from our visit to Bayer CropScience site, with “Safety, Quality, Health and Environmental Protection” as orientation for core value. The scientists there gave us an introduction on how to monitor the influence of newly developed pesticide on environment by isotope labeling method to ensure compliance with relevant governmental laws and regulations.
 
The group got an insight into the environmental sites of Bayer in Bürrig, in particular into one of Bayer's incinerators.
The group got an insight into the environmental sites of Bayer in Bürrig, in particular into one of Bayer's incinerators.
The visit to city solid waste treatment center in Leverkusen gave me a sensible understanding towards the concept that “solid waste is the misplaced resource”. The pollution should be actively controlled from the original source, while various links including recovery, separation, recycling, etc. during the process of waste resource utilization should be deemed as an organism. The German government attaches great importance to the advertisement and education on environmental protection for its citizens, with special brochure distributed to them to introduce in details the specific methods and requirements for garbage classification. For example, the garbage can for recovery of glass bottles is divided into three colors while the metal bottle caps should be collected separately. All these measures not only reduce the follow-up treatment cost, but also improve the efficiency, and the ultimate flammable garbage with a low recovery value can enter into the garbage power plant as fuel. Although the cost for garbage power generation is comparatively higher, benefited from the Law of Recyclable Energy Resources, the garbage power plant enjoying governmental subsidy is competitive too. One engineer told us proudly that if somebody stood at the chimney mouth of the power plant, it was absolutely safe for his breath, since the emitted gas only includes carbon dioxide, water and little fuel dust. I think it is the reason why the sky of Ruhr Region is blue as well despite of the smoking chimneys we can see frequently. The coordinated development of economy, environment and society in Germany is contributed by the joint efforts of its citizens, enterprises and government.
 
In the town-like city, when people approach, the birds perch unalarmed
Lawn along the street in Cologne is sprinkled with various weeds and wild flowers. Sometimes we could even see the brushy animals passing by quickly and disappearing even when I didn’t figure them out. A natural breath of soil is delivered by the beauty of weeds. Cologne Cathedral brings us a visual impact, but my heart was deeply shocked when I found the widgeons and wide geese were living in harmony with the citizens: they either rested in the water or ate grass along the bank with no fear of the passengers, but only elongated their necks for looking around. The commonly used word in the year of 2006 - Original Ecology, should be best demonstrated by such an image. I think this kind of harmonious scene can only be found in the place with a natural economy but little human interference.
 
The envoys on their way to the State Environmental Protection Agency lab ship \"Max Prüss\" where they took a water sample out of the Rhine river.
The envoys on their way to the State Environmental Protection Agency lab ship "Max Prüss" where they took a water sample out of the Rhine river.
When I took the branch airline from Cologne to Frankford, the land under blue sky through the window of airplane was so clear: the red and yellow forest, blue sky, white cloud and green land constituted an occident canvas with bright colors. In 1970s, the German children wished to have blue sky and clear Rhine River. Under joint efforts by German people nowadays, this dream finally came true. When I came back to Shanghai waiting for customs clearance, I saw a commonweal picture, which demonstrated the wish of a child to enjoy blue sky and green water in his dreaming homestead. I believe that China has walked on a correct development road, and we will also regain the fresh air and enjoy the clear water through our great efforts.
 
One visit, life benefit
Envoys celebrating the award ceremony on the last evening of the field trip.
Envoys celebrating the award ceremony on the last evening of the field trip.
Participation in this activity brings me a perceivable improvement: the international vision of special envoy from Korea deserves my learning and reflection, who has been focused on the management of sand storm in Asia, and went to China Agricultural University for study with an aspiration of participating in the management of desert in Inner Mongolia; I also made progress in my personal planning and disposing capability, and greatly improved my English ability especially the spoken English, with certain adaptation to English of different accents in different countries. Most importantly, I became more self-confident than ever before.

At present, I am studying in State Key Laboratory for Pollution Control and Resource Utilization in Nanjing University to do some research on the solution to management of industrial waste water and resource utilization under the guidance of Professor Li Aimin. I hope I can make some contribution to the sustainable development in China through my efforts.

 

 

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