Beijing [China], May 2 (ANI): Chinese Communist Party’s plan to use coal-fired energy for boosting the economy may jeopardise the world’s climate.
China is looking to increase the coal production capacity by 300 million tonnes this year which will be a 7 per cent increase over the last year’s 4.1 billion tonnes. Despite the fact that China is itself a big investor in the wind and solar energy sources, officials requested for the coal-fired electricity as the economy of the country faltered last year, resulting in power interruptions and company closures. Even the Russia-Ukraine war has added to the Beijing’s tension. This war will disturb the global oil and coal supply.
“This attitude of guaranteeing energy security has surpassed carbon neutrality,” Li Shuo, Greenpeace’s senior global policy advisor said.
As President Xi Jinping seeks for a third five-year term as leader of the ruling party in autumn, officials are under political pressure to maintain the stability. Coal is important for the energy security. Chinese cabinet officials emphasised upon the enhancement of the production capacity in April 20 meeting. The government is also building power plants to boost the GDP of the country, which fell to 4 per cent over year in the fourth quarter of 2021, down from 8.1 per cent for the year, a Canada-based think tank, International Forum for Rights and Security (IFFRAS).
According to the think tank, government decided to aim for a 2 degree Celsius increase in atmospheric temperature over pre-industrial levels although the leaders believe that a 1.5 degree Celsius is what they are looking for. The scientists predicted that even if the world is able to achieve the 2-degree objective, which was set forth in the 2015 Paris climate agreement and the 2021 Glasgow follow-up agreement, rising oceans, larger storms, extinction of plants and animals, and more fatalities from heat, smog, and infectious illnesses would ensue.
Addressing UN in 2020, Jinping stated that carbon emissions will peak by 2030, although he did not provide a figure. He further added that by 2060, China plans to achieve the carbon neutrality, or extracting as much carbon from the atmosphere as is released by industry and families through tree planting and other methods, as reported by think tank.
According to the World Resources Institute, China accounts for 26.1 per cent of world emissions, which is over two times the US contribution of 12.8 per cent and China’s 1.4 billion people emit an average of 8.4 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year. This is less than half of the 17.7 tonnes averaged in the US, but higher than of the 7.5 tonnes averaged in the European Union.
According to the think tank, there is a prediction that coal will provide 60 per cent of the China’s electricity in the near future. Beijing is trying to reduce the size of its bloated state-owned coal mining industry by millions of jobs but still the output and consumptions are expanding. While the authorities claimed that the carbon emission per unit of economic production are decreasing.
Last year, the government announced a decrease of 3.8 per cent, which was higher than the 1 per cent cut in 2020 but lower than the 5.1 per cent cut in 2017. The stimulus funding may also increase the carbon emissions in the country if it is used to fund the construction of new bridges, train stations, and other public works. This would boost the manufacturing of carbon-intensive steel and cement. (ANI)