Here’s Why China Isn’t Going Green Anytime Soon

(REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton)

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Andrew Follett Energy and Science Reporter
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China is deeply dependent on coal power and won’t be going green anytime soon, according to a chart published Friday by the free-market Institute for Energy Research (IER).

In 2014, 62.2 percent of Chinese electricity came from coal power and only 8.9 percent came from solar or wind. The Chinese government isn’t building any new wind turbines because most of the new electricity created was wasted, causing serious damage to the country’s electrical grid.

Coal power emits more carbon dioxide (CO2) than any other source of electricity.

China emits 29 percent of the world’s CO2 while the US is only responsible for 15 percent of the world’s emissions, according to a 2014 study by the European Union. China has only agreed to stop increasing its emissions by 2030, not to make any reductions.

Experts say Chinese and Indian carbon reduction is critical to the goal of keeping temperature increases below 2 degrees Celsius, yet neither country has made a serious commitment to the $90 trillion green energy price tag the International Energy Agency says is required to slow global warming.

China has spent more than $80 billion on green energy in 2014 alone, while the U.S. spent a “mere” $34 billion.

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