How does China’s climate pledge stack up?

By Alliance President, Barbara Finamore. Via NRDC Switchboard Blog

As mentioned in a post on Carbon Pulse, China’s climate pledge will require the country to make very significant changes to its emissions trajectory – including adding non-fossil power equivalent to the entire U.S. power generating capacity by 2030. When you compare China’s growth trajectory against that of developed countries, how does it compare?

Li Junfeng, Director General of the National Center of Climate Change Strategy Research and Deputy Director of the Energy Research Institute at China’s National Development and Reform Commission, has provided a helpful comparison of China’s climate pledge and that of leading developed countries. He concludes that China is making significant contributions comparable to that of developed countries, based on a number of indicators we’ll discuss below.

Comparing peak years, China’s emissions would peak at a much lower GDP per capita than that of developed countries

China committed to peak its emission by 2030, when its GDP per capita will be at about $10,000 in 2005 dollars. The United States peaked when its GDP per capita was at about $40,000. The EU peaked when its GDP per capita was at about $20,000. While some other developed countries still haven’t peaked at $50,000.

Comparing the peak value per capita, China has a lower emissions per capita

Based on current projections, China’s emissions per capita when it peaks will be no more than 10 tons GHG per capita. The U.S. peaked at 19.5 tons GHG per capita, while Germany peaked at 14.1 tons GHG per capita and the UK peaked at 11.3 tons GHG per capita.

Peak GHG Emissions Per Capita

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