China and Japan: The Green Connection

China wants clean technology; Japan has it to sell. On the eve of the G-8 summit, two traditional rivals have reasons to heal old wounds

Ian Teh / Panos

Cleaner energy China needs to upgrade its coal-fired power plants.

An 11-story building in Beijing is one of the few places in China where you'll hear people speak fondly of Japan. Inside are the offices of the Sino-Japan Friendship Center for Environmental Protection, where experts study how Japan became one of the world's greenest countries, with the aim of applying those lessons and methods to China. "Japan, on an international level, is a responsible country," says the center's vice director, Xia Guang. "We recognize that Japan's work promoting environmental protection in China has real seriousness, and we thank the government and people of Japan."

It's hard to fathom China's thanking Japan...

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