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Clean Power China CO2 emissions match Italy

Published on October 27th, 2011 | by Susan Kraemer

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China’s CO2 Emissions Now on a Par With Italy’s (Per Capita)

October 27th, 2011 by  


China CO2 emissions match Italy

Even though China has doubled its installed wind and solar power capacity for the sixth year in a row, its emissions continue to rise as its growth has continued. In a study from the European Commission: Longterm Trends in Global CO2 Emissions, over the entire 20 year period studied — from 1990 till 2010 — China increased all forms of energy production to keep pace with its growth, increasing renewable energy sources like solar and wind by 10%, and gas and coal-fired power by 11.6%.

It increased steel production by 11.6% and cement production by 15.1% over the 20 years, and both steel-making and cement are big CO2 emitters.

The European study goes back to 1990, the base year of the Kyoto Accord, which China did not sign. In the last six years, however, China has made huge jumps in renewable energy capacity, with new wind power capacity growing faster than coal, while during the earlier years tallied, coal was the preferred new energy source.

CO2 emissions per capita have grown to where now it is on a par with Italy’s, higher than France’s, and lower than Germany’s.

China’s CO2 emissions per capita have increased from 2.2 to 6.8 tonnes (per capita) in the 20 years since since 1990, while they have decreased in the EU-15 from 9.1 to 7.9 tonnes per capita. The EU-15 were the 15 highly developed core European Union nations that signed the Kyoto Accord. Since 1990, other less industrialized nations, mostly former soviet satellites have now joined the EU, making up the EU-27.

While Europe and China have seemed to converge at somewhere under ten US tons per capita, however, the US remains the world’s highest CO2 emitter..

Since 1990, the US reduced emissions from 19.7 tonnes per capita (22 US tons), to 16.9 tonnes per capita, still the highest per capita rate, but lower, and the comparably developed, but Kyoto-signing, EU-15 nations dropped from their already much lower 9.1 tonnes (10 tons) to 7.9 tonnes per capita.

Image: New Chinese protest art at the Robischon Gallery

Susan Kraemer@Twitter
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About the Author

writes at CleanTechnica, CSP-Today and Renewable Energy World.  She has also been published at Wind Energy Update, Solar Plaza, Earthtechling PV-Insider , and GreenProphet, Ecoseed, NRDC OnEarth, MatterNetwork, Celsius, EnergyNow, and Scientific American. As a former serial entrepreneur in product design, Susan brings an innovator's perspective on inventing a carbon-constrained civilization: If necessity is the mother of invention, solving climate change is the mother of all necessities! As a lover of history and sci-fi, she enjoys chronicling the strange future we are creating in these interesting times.    Follow Susan on Twitter @dotcommodity.



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