Latest from ChinaFAQs
- At a measuring station near Beijing, US and Chinese scientists are collecting unique measurements of carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in air that has passed over one of China’s most industrialized, urbanized regions. This record provides an independent view of China’s efforts to improve energy efficiency.
- Comparing CO2 levels with carbon monoxide (CO) levels serves as an independent indicator of overall trends in efficiency of fuel combustion in this critical region.
- The record shows a pattern of improved combustion efficiency from 2005 to 2008, consistent with energy efficiency policies pursued under the 11th Five Year Plan, in particular the goal to reduce energy intensity by 20%.
As negotiators arrive in Cancun for the next round of global climate talks, speculation once again hovers around China’s positions. China is a tough negotiator, and we can once again see it expressing concern about its core issues, including developed country mitigation commitments, technology transfer and the adequacy of financing. But as we look to negotiating positions, it is also worth stepping back for a minute to reflect on what China is doing domestically and how China’s efforts to promote energy efficiency and low carbon technologies can contribute to the global effort to combat climate change.
“Late last year, Ren and around 40 other young Chinese people arrived in Copenhagen, hoping to break the silence of their peers on the international issue of climate change. They constituted the largest Chinese youth group ever to take part in a United Nations climate-change summit.”
-China Dialogue, April 14, 2010
- Collaboration between the United States and China, the world’s two largest emitters of greenhouse gases, will be key to scaling up the technologies needed to curb climate change and reduce costs.
- The two nations have collaborated for over 20 years on energy and climate issues, and recently agreed to a new, wide-ranging set of cooperative efforts.
- Collaboration can deliver tangible benefits to both nations and the world at-large, including new markets for U.S. technologies, better monitoring of China’s emissions, and lower global costs of controlling emissions.
Must Read on Chinese Coal Challenge: James Fallows Addresses De-Carbonizing Coal in the Latest Atlantic MonthlyPosted by Deborah Seligsohn on Nov 12, 2010
Anyone interested in how China can both use coal and ultimately reduce its carbon emissions should read the latest issue of the Atlantic Monthly. James Fallows, who recently spent three years living in China, getting a handle on how things actually work beyond the rhetoric (see his 2009 book Postcards from Tomorrow Square: Reports from China), goes deep into the reasons for China’s coal dependence and the way it can be addressed through carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology.
While the UN climate talks at Tianjin went slowly, a trip to China offered the opportunity for the world to see the successes in wind technology development and deployment experienced there and throughout the region. This progress was highlighted in both a wind-focused side event at the Tianjin conference that Joanna Lewis organized for Georgetown University, and at the annual China Windpower 2010 conference held in Beijing the week after the climate talks.
In addition to the Party Plenum Communique (discussed on this site last week), China’s Communist Party in its annual meeting (called a Plenum) issued an “opinion” on the 12th Five Year Plan. This essentially is a set of instructions and parameters to drafters of the plan. My colleague Fong Wee Kean in the WRI Beijing office translated the full paragraph 22 on climate change into English.