China's carbon intensity falls over 3.5 percent in 2012: official

BEIJING Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:24am EST

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BEIJING (Reuters) - China's carbon intensity, or its emissions relative to economic output, fell more than 3.5 percent in 2012, outperforming its average annual target, China's chief climate change official said on Thursday.

China aims to cut carbon intensity by 17 percent during the 2011-2015 period, which means an annual average target of around 3.5 percent. Intensity is the amount of carbon dioxide emitted per unit of gross domestic product.

"The situation last year was relatively good. Based on a preliminary estimate, China could achieve a more than 3.5 percent fall in carbon intensity," said Su Wei, director general of climate change department of National Development and Reform Commission.

Cutting carbon intensity allows China to meet international demands for it to curb emissions and also keep its priority that development must come first while many Chinese still live in poverty.

The government is currently drawing up a national plan on climate change till 2020, which is expected to be finalized soon, Su said.

China recently published a new industrial carbon emissions plan. Steel, nonferrous metals and petrochemical sectors are required to cut CO2 intensity by 18 percent by 2015 compared with the 2010 level.

By 2020, China aims to cut its carbon intensity by 40 to 45 percent versus the 2005 level, a target that is stimulating a sharp increase in investment demand in energy efficiency and renewable energy.

Its efforts to control emissions are also paving the way for creation of a carbon market, which requires accurate measurements of the carbon emitted.

China's biggest listed steelmaker, Baoshan Iron and Steel, is among the industrial companies that must participate in a pilot carbon trading scheme in Shanghai, the local government said last month.

China will need 1.24 trillion yuan ($199.2 billion) in energy conservation investments in 2011-2015, an increase of 50 percent from the level in 2006-2010, according to a research report released by Tsinghua University on Thursday.

The investment in China's renewable energy sector in 2011-2015 will increase 37.5 percent to 1.8 trillion yuan, the report showed. ($1 = 6.2262 Chinese yuan)

(Reporting by Wan Xu and David Standway; editing by Jane Baird)

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Comments (3)
MikeBarnett wrote:
China announced a $1.7 trillion 5 year plan ($340 billion per year) at the Durban Conference on climate change in late 2011. It contained 22 steps, mostly aimed at improving emissions from industrial processes. I have pointed out that results would be seen by mid-2014 and would continue to improve. It is good to see that measurable results have come earlier.

Xi Jinping has a degree in chemical engineering, and this plan is his major contribution, and the article is correct that it should last at least 10 years. Hu Jintao has a degree in hydraulic engineering, and his major project has been a massive irrigation plan to move excess rain water from the south and east coasts where it is not needed to the northern and western provinces where it is needed. This project includes land reclamation and should last until 2020 to 2025. It was ridiculed in the west until the 2011 droughts, fires, and heat forced the US to import food from China, and the US bought more Chinese food in 2012. The US, Mexico, Africa, the Middle East, Australia, and India are becoming polluted deserts, so Beijing should dominate the world’s food supply by 2025. The leaders of China are scientists, engineers, and technicians who have proper training for their major projects.

My partners and I are helping with both pollution and food production. We operate warehouse farms with multiple technologies inside cities that take city air, pass it through electrostatic plates to remove the dangerous pollutants, use filters to remove particulates, and use the CO2 to increase food production and clean the air. The equation is CO2 + H2O + soil nutrients + green plants + light = food + O2. We are helping China grow more food and reduce pollution in its cities at the same time.

Jan 10, 2013 1:40pm EST  --  Report as abuse
boonteetan wrote:
On the contrary, the meteoric rise of China’s economy is beginning to take its toll. The unfiltered air from factories, chemical industries, electricity generators and cars had polluted the nation’s atmosphere to such an extent that it is beyond belief.Beijing’s cars are chocking the city. This is a severe warning from nature. Failing to impose strict rules to contain air pollution will certainly be disastrous. No more procrastination, act now, act fast. (vzc1943)

Jan 13, 2013 5:04am EST  --  Report as abuse
JesseR wrote:
Instead of insulting China on pollution, we should praise the efforts toward sustainability. Of all places to test the limits of population, China is a ready test ground. With a need for ecological technology greater then any other country. Just imagine a China with ten billion people, obviously coal firing plants would not suit their needs!

Jan 13, 2013 7:05pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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