China CO2 Cap Plan is Turning Point in Climate Talks

Posted by Joseph Keefe
Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Government adviser says China to introduce absolute cap from 2016. U.S. has announced plans to rein in emissions from its power sector. Climate negotiators heading to Germany for climate talks.

China said on Tuesday it will set an absolute cap on its CO2 emissions from 2016 just a day after the United States announced new targets for its power sector, signalling a potential breakthrough in tough U.N. climate talks.

Progress in global climate negotiations has often been held back by a deep split between rich and poor nations, led by the United States and China, respectively, over who should step up their game to reduce emissions.

But the fact that the two biggest emitters of greenhouse gases made unprecedented announcements on climate within 24 hours of each other sparked optimism among observers hoping to see the decades-old deadlock broken. The steps come ahead of a global meet on climate change starting on Wednesday in Germany.

China, the world's biggest emitter, will set a total cap on its CO2 emissions when its next five-year plan comes into force in 2016, He Jiankun, chairman of China's Advisory Committee on Climate Change, told a conference in Beijing.

Carbon emissions in the coal-reliant economy are likely to continue to grow until 2030, but setting an absolute cap instead of pegging them to the level of economic growth means they will be more tightly regulated and not spiral out of control.

"The Chinese announcement marks potentially the most important turning point in the global scene on climate change for a decade," said Michael Grubb, a professor of international energy and climate policy at University College London.

It is not clear at what level the cap would be set, and a final number is unlikely to be released until China has worked out more details of the five-year plan, possibly sometime next year.

The announcement comes a day after the United States, the world's second-biggest emitter, for the first time announced plans to rein in carbon emissions from its power sector, a move the Obama administration hopes can inject ambition into the slow-moving international climate negotiations.

"The China-US one is a key trust relationship (in climate talks) and if they are rising above that it sends a very powerful signal to the rest of the world to get serious," said John Connor, CEO of Melbourne-based The Climate Institute.

TALKS IN BONN


Focus will now turn to Bonn in Germany, where negotiators from over 190 nations meet from Wednesday for the latest 10-day round of talks in a process meant to lead to a new global climate treaty in Paris in December 2015.

"Interesting hint from Beijing, although the key point will be where (the cap) is set. If ambitious and announced well in advance of Paris, it could be a game changer," said a spokesman for EU Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard.

China, often blamed by rich countries for holding back progress in U.N. talks on emissions due to its reluctance to take on a binding target, is stepping up efforts to clean up or shut down carbon-emitting sources such as coal-fired power plants, factories and vehicles, because they have also created a much-publicised pollution crisis that ends hundreds of thousands lives prematurely every year.

Despite the absolute cap on CO2, adviser He said China's greenhouse gas emissions would only peak in 2030, at around 11 billion tonnes of CO2-equivalent. Its emissions currently stand at around 7-9.5 billion tonnes.

But He said that would depend on China achieving a real reduction in coal consumption from sometime around 2020 or 2025, and on the nation meeting its target of having 150-200 gigawatts of nuclear power capacity by 2030.

The share of non-fossil fuels in China's energy mix would reach 20 to 25 percent in 2030.

 

By Kathy Chen and Stian Reklev

Maritime Reporter August 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Marine Propulsion

Gas Turbine Acceptance Test Completed for S. Korea Navy

Rolls-Royce has reached a milestone in the Republic of Korea Navy’s FFX frigate program, with the successful completion of acceptance tests for the MT30 gas turbine.

Mercury Marine Launches Repower Financing

Mercury Marine launched a new repower finance program that aims to make it easier for consumers to get the engine performance they want with flexible financing for a broad range of buyers.

MN 100: Twin Disc, Inc.

1328 Racine Street Racine, WI 53403 Telephone: 262 638 4000 Web: www.twindisc.com President and CEO: John H. Batten Number of employees: 990 The Company: Twin Disc designs,

Environmental

Maritime Academy Awarded DHS Grant for Arctic Training

Maine Maritime Academy receives $450,000 grant From U.S. Department of Homeland Security for ice navigation and maritime first responder courses for the Arctic Maine

Great Lakes Dry Cargo Residue Discharge Rule in Effect

The U.S. Coast Guard published a final rule to the Federal Register announcing that it has received approval from the Office of Management and Budget for an information

Survey Vessel Delivered to Fugro N.V.

Fugro Pioneer is the second of three vessels to be delivered to Fugro in 2014. Fugro has taken delivery of the second of the three Fugro Offshore Coastal Survey

Energy

The Switch to Deliver Full-Power Converter for Floating Power Plant

Vancouver-based Water Wall Turbine Inc. (WWT) has selected The Switch to provide a 500 kW full-power converter for its self-floating power plant. This new system

Maersk Sells Ven Drilling Barges

Danish shipping conglomerate A.P. Moller-Maersk said on Tuesday its offshore oil and gas drilling unit has sold its Venezuelan barge activities. Maersk Drilling

Upcoming Winter Tanker Market Same as Last Year?

Will the 2014/15 winter tanker market be a repeat of the previous one? Poten & Partners consider the question in their latest 'Poten Tanker Opinion'. As the

Fuels & Lubes

Upcoming Winter Tanker Market Same as Last Year?

Will the 2014/15 winter tanker market be a repeat of the previous one? Poten & Partners consider the question in their latest 'Poten Tanker Opinion'. As the

MN 100: Total Lubmarine

Le Diamant B – 16, rue de la République 92922 Paris-La-Défense Cedex, France E-mail: rm.total-lubmarine@total.com Web: www.lubmarine.com The Company: Total

Brent Oil Hits 26-month Low Under US$97

Brent crude oil on Monday slumped to its lowest in over two years, below $97 per barrel as lacklustre economic data from China, the world's top energy consumer,

People in the News

China, Sri Lanka to Launch FTA Talks

Chinese President Xi Jinping began a visit to Sri Lanka on Tuesday agreeing to open bilateral negotiations for a free trade pact as Beijing tightened its embrace

Video: Former Captives Discuss Iceberg 1 Hijacking

Piracy: Not a Thing of the Past Think Somali piracy is a thing of the past? That “past” haunts thousands of seafarers today; but the reports from individual seafarers mostly go unnoticed,

Maersk Sells Ven Drilling Barges

Danish shipping conglomerate A.P. Moller-Maersk said on Tuesday its offshore oil and gas drilling unit has sold its Venezuelan barge activities. Maersk Drilling

Government Update

China, Sri Lanka to Launch FTA Talks

Chinese President Xi Jinping began a visit to Sri Lanka on Tuesday agreeing to open bilateral negotiations for a free trade pact as Beijing tightened its embrace

Maritime Academy Awarded DHS Grant for Arctic Training

Maine Maritime Academy receives $450,000 grant From U.S. Department of Homeland Security for ice navigation and maritime first responder courses for the Arctic Maine

Haze and Reduced Visibility at Singapore Ports

Due to the presence of haze, the Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore Port Marine in their Notice No.113 of 2014 dated 15 September 2014 have informed the

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1617 sec (6 req/sec)