China continues its massive GHG emissions

by Ginosar  


China now emits about 8 billion tons of CO2 annually, a quarter of the global emission. With China's GDP growth of nearly 10% it almost does not matter what other nations will be doing to reduce their GHG. If current trend continues, China's own emissions would be some 50% of (current) global level in less than a decade. China per capita GHG emission is now higher than the global average of some 5 metric ton. But it is still a fact that the US contributed most to the accumulated global GHG, and that is what the Chinese are pointing to as their moral right to continue mass GHG emission. The trouble is that we are all in the same boat and we will be suffering together, immaterial who started it and who is adding the fastest to it.


China unbound drive to increase its economic output for both external and local markets drive its enormous need for energy. Its dependence on coal power plants (now 80%) is accelerating despite the rapid increase in green energy generation. Green energy from nuclear, solar and wind is so small compare to coal, it is essentially insignificant. And will remain so small since centralized, large scale coal plants are dependent technology with 24/7 availability, easier and faster to put on line, and their energy monetary cost will continue to be lower than the alternatives, since we are universally ignoring serious environmental costs.


China leadership does not grasp fully the urgency of global warming and how it will soon seriously deteriorate their own environment and thus negating some of their own economic accomplishments. They focus on the urgency of fast economic growth for 800 million of their people eager to emerge from their near absolute poverty, many with income of just a few dollars a day.


Just one example of environmental neglect: most of China modern residential high rise have either no, or minimal insulation. With 25 million unoccupied new apartments, their housing bubble may be around the corner, and when occupied eventually, their demand for electricity/gas would be immense.


I assume that China leadership believes that the impact of GW will come later than the current need for rapid economic growth, and they will have time to deal with GW then. I do not believe they are as wise as some think. Despite China outstanding long-term effort to reduce its population growth, they are constrained by similar limitations of the West: short term thinking and inability to grasp undesirable facts, (however, not to the extent that the US suffers from these and its political disintegration.) China centralized political control, nonetheless, gives them the ability to move on a dime compare to the Democratic West.


Most global leaders, especially in the US, are unable to fully grasp the accelerating negative impacts of GW on agriculture, food supply, ocean productivity, rise in ocean levels, increase in regional aridity, shortage of fresh water, unstable weather patterns, and likelihood of catastrophic events (tipping points). They think we would be able to deal with them in the future. They may even think that some magical technological fix would get us out of the worst aspects of GW. No sensible person should accept that approach.


China, like the rest of humanity, is on a collision course between desire for economic growth and survival.

China is not going to do anything meaningful to reduce its immense Greenhouse Gases. They talk about it, but when you study both their words, and especially their actions you can see clearly how misleading their promises are. The central government can issue impressive guidelines, but provincial and local leadership determine the facts. Economic control and drive is more locally based and influenced by personal relationships and not by the rule of law, as in most Western countries.


Study carefully the double talk about energy in the article below from Chinadaily. They aim to cut energy intensity per GDP by 16% by 2015, letting them continue almost unabated with their rapid GHG increase. But even that is just words.


Listen to this nonsense:

"As a top priority, China will actively nurture new consumption frontiers and optimize the consumption environment to boost its consumption capability and demand."




China to unveil new energy consumption strategy

Updated: 2011-12-17 10:27

By Lan Lan (China Daily)

Final part from:

......."It will be an unavoidable dilemma that China will have to deal with in the coming years - continuing the processes of industrialization and urbanization while coming under pressure to act more in cutting emissions," said Lin Boqiang, director of the China Center for Energy Economics Research at Xiamen University.


China has set a target of cutting energy intensity - which is calculated as units of energy for each unit of GDP - by 16 percent by 2015 from the 2010 level.


"The controls on total energy consumption will be tougher indicators than the energy-intensity targets, because there are loopholes through which local governments can achieve their energy-intensity targets by expanding the GDP base accordingly," said Lin.

The controls will be allocated to provincial governments. The plan will not only have an impact on GDP growth but will also influence the energy structure and price. "Setting limits on energy use means putting limits on GDP," Lin said.


Li Junfeng, deputy director of the Energy Research Institute affiliated with the NDRC, said China must switch to "healthy and qualified GDP", otherwise, it will take years to digest the "junk GDP" at a high environmental cost.

Earlier this month, China laid out detailed plans to control greenhouse gas emissions in the coming five years, with the national target allocated to provincial governments.

In addition, China will adopt more measures to save energy and reduce emissions by increasing the fines imposed for discharging pollutants such as nitrogen oxides, Zhang added.


Stabilizing prices

"Maintaining price stability remains the prime aim of the government's macroeconomic controls next year," said Zhang.

With relatively rapid economic growth and a lower rate of inflation, China's economy has been heading in the right direction this year, the beginning of the nation's 12th Five-Year Plan, he said.

He stressed the need to maintain stable growth next year, an issue that was highlighted at the annual Central Economic Work Conference earlier this week.


As a top priority, China will actively nurture new consumption frontiers and optimize the consumption environment to boost its consumption capability and demand.


Another example:

China rebuffs scheme to cut steel emissions. An ambitious industry-led project to cut carbon dioxide emissions from steel plants is in danger of foundering on account of the refusal by any of China’s producers, which between them account for more than 40 per cent of world production of the metal, to join the initiative. London Financial Times

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