China on track to beat 2015 carbon intensity target

Published 11:23 on June 17, 2015  /  Last updated at 11:23 on June 17, 2015  /  China  /  No Comments

China’s greenhouse gas emissions per unit of GDP in 2014 was 16% below 2010 levels, putting the world’s biggest emitter on track to beat its 17% reduction target in the current five-year plan, China’s top climate official said Wednesday.

China’s greenhouse gas emissions per unit of GDP in 2014 was 16% below 2010 levels, putting the world’s biggest emitter on track to beat its 17% reduction target in the current five-year plan, China’s top climate official said Wednesday.

Zhang Yong, vice director of the NDRC, released the figure at a low carbon conference in Shenzhen.

The drop in carbon intensity adds to the pattern of coal consumption and carbon emissions falling quicker than most experts expected even only a year ago, causing some analysts to predict China’s emissions might peak in the first half of the next decade.

China is on the verge of submitting its INDC to the UN, which will reveal whether officials are ready to translate the reduction trend into more ambitious targets on the international scene.

Most observers expect China’s post-2020 target to be centered around a new carbon intensity goal.

In the UN context, China has pledged to cut its carbon intensity to 40-45% below 2005 levels by 2020. Premier Li Keqiang said last week China has so far achieved a 33.8% reduction.

But while China tends to hold back in its international pledges, domestically officials continue to set new targets for power producers and industry.

Last month, a 10-year plan for China’s manufacturing industries ordered factories to cut their carbon intensity 40% from 2015 levels by 2025, a move analysts said would further speed up CO2 emission cuts.

By Stian Reklev – stian@carbon-pulse.com

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