Leading the Global Transformative Innovations for a Sustainable Future

Paulson Institute and Tsinghua University Announce the Winners of the 2022 Paulson Prize

Beijing, December 15, 2023—Today, the Paulson Institute, in partnership with Tsinghua University, announced the winners of the 2022 Paulson Prize for Sustainability at a virtual award ceremony. China’s Pilot Energy Big Data Center to Support Carbon Neutrality Strategy in Zhejiang and the project Innovative Model of Urban Development and Wetland Conservation from Changshu, Jiangsu Province, stood out among the other nominees and were awarded the Green Innovation Award and the Nature Stewardship Award, respectively.

2022 is a crucial year for climate change and biodiversity conservation. The UN Biodiversity Conference (COP 15) is now convening in Montreal, where countries are calling for new thinking and transformative solutions to chart a new course for the future of our planet.

“Today, we’re living through an age of existential risk in the natural world,” said Henry M. Paulson, Jr., Chairman of the Paulson Institute. “We need a cultural transformation in awareness, not only of the existing challenges but the solutions needed to chart a better course for our planet. This is what the Paulson Prize for Sustainability aims to advance.”

Launched in 2013, the Prize has awarded projects in China that provide innovative, scalable, and market-based solutions to tackle the most pressing climate and environmental challenges. The Prize shines a light on notable projects that offer the most sustainable best practices in China and the rest of the world.

“Green development based on eco-civilization is a viable path for sustainable development of human society. China is making active attempts to promote green development, tackle climate change, and conserve biodiversity—providing a useful experience for countries around the world. These are goals shared by Tsinghua University and the Paulson Institute in our efforts to accelerate sustainable development,” said Nie Jianguo, Chairperson of the Academic Committee of Tsinghua University and academician of the CAE.

The Paulson Prize established two categories: Nature Stewardship and Green Innovation. The Nature Stewardship category recognizes innovative and scalable projects that preserve and protect the natural environment. The Green Innovation category promotes climate and environmental solutions.

Having built China’s first provincial-level energy big data center by breaking through data barriers and providing a solution for precise carbon reduction, the project China’s Pilot Energy Big Data Center to Support Carbon Neutrality Strategy in Zhejiang by State Grid Zhejiang Provincial Electric Power Company was awarded the Green Innovation Award.

Tracy Wolstencroft, Co-Chair of the Jury, Senior Advisor to TPG Rise Climate, and former President and CEO of the National Geographic Society, said, “The winning project offers a systemic solution that provides critical and timely energy and carbon emissions data to empower decarbonization. We are impressed by the scale and replicability of the solution, as well as the governance structure to engage municipal and provincial policy-makers, business leaders, and financial institutions. Building this value-added data service on top of the energy delivery business is a powerful combination that will generate economy-wide impact.”

Having achieved a harmonious human-wetland relationship and prosperity between wetland conservation and urban development, the project Innovative Model of Urban Development and Wetland Conservation by Changshu Wetland Conservation and Management Station was awarded the Nature Stewardship Award.

Professor Keping Ma, Co-Chair of the Jury, IUCN Regional Councilor and Chair for the Asia Regional Members Committee, and Deputy Director of the Biodiversity Committee of the Chinese Academy of Science said, “With nature-based solutions and multiparty participation, the Changshu project provides a Chinese paradigm of wetland conservation in developed areas and an example of creating and managing an international wetland city.”

The projects recognized with excellence awards in the Green Innovation category:

  • Innovative Pollution Monitoring Technology and Supervision Model Based on Aqueous Fingerprint by Suzhou G-Seeker Technology Co., Ltd
  • “C cloud” Solution: Reshaping Carbon Management for Businesses by Carbonstop (Beijing) Tech Co., Ltd

And in the Nature Stewardship category:

  • Practices on Protecting and Rewilding for Ecosystem Authenticity of Sanjiangyuan by Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
  • China Nature Watch: Filling “Data Gaps” for Biodiversity Conservation by Shan Shui Conservation Center
  • Novartis Southwest Sichuan Carbon-Sink Forestry, Community and Biodiversity Project by Novartis Group (China).

The Paulson Prize is supported by the China Association of Circular Economy, AmCham China, C-Team, The Nature Conservancy, Center for China and Globalization (CCG), and media partner Yicai Media Group.


About the Paulson Institute
The Paulson Institute is a non-partisan, independent “think and do tank” dedicated to fostering a US-China relationship that serves to maintain global order in a rapidly evolving world. Our focus on US-China is dictated by the reality that it is the most consequential bilateral relationship in the world. We often operate at the intersection of economics, financial markets, environmental protection, and policy advocacy, in part by promoting balanced and sustainable economic growth. Founded in 2011 by former US Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson, Jr., the Institute is based in Chicago with offices in Washington and Beijing.

About Tsinghua University
Tsinghua University was established in 1911. With the motto of “Self-Discipline and Social Commitment” and the spirit of “Actions Speak Louder than Words,” Tsinghua University is dedicated to the well-being of Chinese society and world development. At present, the university has 14 schools and 56 departments with faculties in science, engineering, humanities, law, medicine, history, philosophy, economics, management, education, and art. The University has over 25,900 students, including 13,100 undergraduates and 12,800 graduate students. As one of China’s most renowned universities, Tsinghua has become an important institution for fostering talent and scientific research.

Media contact:
Jing Wang