Another Major Climate Breakthrough

Finamore, Barbara, Finder, Susan | January 27, 2015 | Leave a Comment Download as PDF

Photo of Chinese Coal Power Plant via the NRDC

China Will Cap its Coal Consumption by 2020

Barabara Finamore and Susan Finder take a detailed look at the pledges and plans China is putting forth to cut back the nation’s contributions to climate change. From this detailed assessment comes optimism that China will be successful in its campaign to rein in carbon emission:

 “We believe that China’s unprecedented climate and coal cap pledges transmit very powerful signals that will drive domestic action and set the stage for even more ambitious targets going forward.  As we’ve seen most recently in the area of wind and solar power development, China has a long history of setting targets that it feels confident it can meet, only to revise them upward repeatedly as its efforts prove successful.”

This post was originally published on the National Resource Defense Council Staff Blog, Switchboard, on November 21, 2014. You can read the entire article here.

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  • Looking at images like these – makes me sick. Not only they show how polluted the air and environment is, but it also reminds of something I recently learned – the air at home is actually 200% more polluted than the air outdoors, because of all the rubbish we buy like air fresheners, toxic cleaning detergents and our inability to look after ourselves and open the windows at least once in a while, or invest in a good, green cleaning. As the previous commenter pointed it is good to see some optimism and I hope things really start to look better for China, which is not just over-populated, but polluted as well. I just think that in most cases it is up to us people to make positive day-to-day decisions!

    Remember purchasing stuff is like giving your vote! The companies, products and services we spend the most on, will thrive. Read the labels, promote locally-produced stuff, go organic, buy from companies that have limited their impact on environment and things will be better for us all.

  • C Knight

    Good to see some optimism that well-ordered developing countries are planning to peak carbon emissions before 2030. One would hope that it’s more than China’s own vulnerability to climate effects motivating this, and that there is some sense of global responsibility, and also they will be able to pledge more shortly, as even the 20% non-fossil generation is a long way from what is needed to avoid mass extinctions.

    Might a Europe-China bilateral agreement will increase ambition and fund more truly sustainable development? Only yesterday I saw an argument for inaction in Europe that “China builds a new coal plant every week”, so the news still needs to filter through that it is everyone’s responsibility. That China “installed more new non-fossil fuel capacity than fossil fuel capacity” in 2014 is a good riposte, but it would be good to hear about demand-side measures and areas other than electricity, steel and cement.