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The next round of United Nations climate negotiations is gearing up to take place starting next week in Doha Qatar, where countries will look to both China and the United States to see whether domestic political events will provide any momentum for the stalling talks. However, because of the proximity of the U.S. Presidential Election and the start of China’s once-in-a-decade leadership transition that will culminate in March, it is not expected that the world’s two largest emitters of greenhouse gases (GHGs) will be bringing too much by way of game-changing developments to Doha. Instead, we can expect most of the discussions in Doha to focus on securing final details for a second commitment period for the Kyoto Protocol, primarily for the E.U. and now Australia, as well as starting to formulate language for a new deal that will be decided by 2015.
Here are a few items to watch coming from China in Doha:
The Chinese Government recently announced the long-awaited provincial energy consumption data for 2011. The data shows that China’s energy intensity in 2011 was 0.793 tons coal equivalent (tce) per unit gross domestic product (GDP), 2.01% less than 2010. The data also reveals new opportunities and challenges for achieving China’s energy intensity target under the Twelfth Five-Year Plan (12FYP) (2011-2015).
Last Friday, experts from the ChinaFAQs Network and top media representatives participated on a press call on climate and energy policy under China’s incoming president, Xi Jinping, and other new leaders. The participants focused on the drivers underlying China’s energy and climate policies and actions. Key issues included whether the country can sustain its renewable energy growth, confront rising coal demand, and follow through on its climate change targets in the 12th five-year plan. All of these issues are emerging as the country faces its first major economic slowdown in more than a decade. This blog post highlights experts’ discussion during the press call.
When it comes to coal consumption, no other nation comes close to China. The country reigns as the world’s largest coal user, burning almost half of the global total each year. About 70 percent of China’s total energy consumption and nearly 80 percent of its electricity production come from coal, and its recent shift from being a historical net coal exporter to the world’s largest net coal importer took only three years.
China’s great thirst for coal is undeniably troubling from a sustainable development standpoint. However, the situation may be changing…
Briefing- Why China Is Acting on Clean Energy: Successes, Challenges, and Implications for U.S. PoliciesPosted by ChinaFAQs on Oct 12, 2012
On October 12, ChinaFAQs and the Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) held a briefing on Capitol Hill about the issues driving China’s renewable energy, energy efficiency, and climate policies. While China and the United States differ in important respects, they have some similar challenges and opportunities relating to energy. Both face economic, employment, energy security, and environmental challenges. The United States and China both cooperate and compete with each other on clean energy initiatives and technology.
The US department of Commerce and the US International Trade Commission have commenced proceedings in trade cases regarding imports of solar cells and other clean energy products from China. The matter is now progressing through the official process for handling such international trade cases. ChinaFAQs has assembled a collection of resources and statements from official sources, media, and concerned groups regarding the cases, and will continue to monitor developments as they unfold.
Diffusion of Clean Energy Innovations: Case Studies from China in Solar, Coal Gasification, Gas Turbines, and BatteriesPosted by ChinaFAQs on Oct 3, 2012
ChinaFAQs Expert and Tufts University Professor Kelly Sims Gallagher recently gave a presentation on the global diffusion of cleaner energy technologies at the University of Texas at Austin’s Energy Institute. Her presentation offers a preview of her new book on the topic, forthcoming from The MIT Press in 2013. The book identifies the conditions necessary for motivating the international diffusion of cleaner energy technologies, and empirically investigates the extent to which certain barriers and incentives to their movement across international borders are valid in the Chinese context.