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August 8, 2010

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Porcelain artwork has dual purpose

A PIECE of porcelain artwork featuring a pair of rare crested ibis birds is now on display at the London Case Pavilion in the Urban Best Practices Area as a symbol of low-carbon manufacturing procedures and the close ties between China and Japan.

The artwork was made at Jingdezhen in Jiangxi Province. The area is famous for high-quality porcelain and pottery.

Hou Guanzhong, a senior official with Franz Collection Inc, the maker of the piece, said special technology was used to reduce the temperature in the porcelain kilns.

"The technology can significantly reduce carbon emissions," Hou said.

Porcelain making is an energy-intensive industry. Using the new technology, carbon emissions can be reduced by 557 tons a year, or the equivalent of planting 15,000 trees.

Together with the porcelain piece, paintings also featuring the rare ibis can be seen in the pavilion.

The paintings, drawn on porcelain plates, were created by Chinese artist Dai Ronghua and head of the Japan Pavilion, Noriyoshi Ehara.

Ehara said the crested ibis is "the ambassador of the two countries" as well as a "representative of ecosystem protection."

The bird was once widespread in Japan and China. However, the species nearly became extinct due to ongoing habitat loss and other reasons.

Extensive breeding programs were developed by China to conserve the species. After more than 20 years of breeding and protection, China gradually set up habitats for the birds. Some of the birds were given to Japan, where the species is treasured.


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