China Sets Long-Term CO2 Limit For The First Time

Leaders in China have, for the first time, indicated how they are approaching their overall greenhouse gas emissions standards.  This is the good news.  But the greater challenge is emissions there will continue to increase under this new guideline for 20 years before leveling off and starting to decrease by mid-century.

Financial reports:

“China and India have been resisting pressure from developed nations to agree to a target of reducing emissions by an overall average of 50 per cent by 2050. Mr Su Wei [China’s climate director] restated Beijing’s view that as China still needs to grow its economy to help its people escape poverty, it is too early to discuss emissions caps.  But he indicated an openness to compromise. “China will not continue growing emissions without limit or insist that all nations must have the same per-capita emissions. If we did that, this earth would be ruined.”

His estimate of the peak of China’s emissions is in line with the more pessimistic forecasts issued by climate change experts. The UK’s Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research recently said China’s energy-related CO 2 output would peak in 2030 at 57 per cent above current levels.  See full article.