Chen Yu was surprised when he registered Tuesday for the annual session of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), China's top political advisory body.
Chen, a member of the CPPCC National Committee from north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, received a notepad and a document bag made of calcium carbonate, which he called a "low-carbon surprise."
Compared with ordinary paper, the new writing materials caused little pollution and helped protect the environment, Chen said.
"It (the new paper) feels soft and comfortable," he said. "I was surprised."
It is the first use of calcium carbonate paper, dubbed "stone paper" at the annual plenary sessions of the National People's Congress (NPC, China's top legislature) and the National Committee of the CPPCC, known as "two sessions."
The CPPCC National Committee session is to convene in Beijing Wednesday afternoon and the plenary session of the NPC will open on Friday morning.
The Champion of the Earth company, which supplied the NPC and the CPPCC with the cheap and degradable calcium carbonate paper products, said they produced the wood-free sheet with new technologies featuring a water-free and fibre-free papermaking process.
The new papersheet is about 20 percent to 30 percent cheaper than the ordinary paper.
According to the company, the groundwood in the paper making is replaced by low-cost precipitated calcium carbonate, while the boiling, washing and bleaching process that needs strong acid, strong alkaline and chlorinated lime and causes pollution is abandoned.
Pu Cunxin, a famous actor and member of the CPPCC National Committee, shared Chen's excitement at the introduction of calcium carbonate paper.
Pu saw its use at the "two sessions" this year as a gesture by the government to boost energy conservation and emissions reduction.
"It definitely has an example-setting effect," Pu said.【1】 【2】