China is the world’s biggest carbon-emitting country. According to a study, China has already hit the renewable target it set for itself at the signing of the Paris climate change agreement.
China pledged in 2014 that its carbon dioxide emissions would have peaked by 2030 but it didn’t take much time to achieve the goal. The decline in economic growth, as well as coal-powered power plants in the last decade, also helped.
The research was led by Professor Dabo Guan from the University of East Anglia, was published in Nature Geoscience.
According to the research, the carbon dioxide level was highest in 2013 at 9.53 gigatons but after that, it has been on a constant downfall.
The researchers said there was “a clear structural break in China’s emission pattern around 2015”.
“We conclude that the decline of Chinese emissions is structural and is likely to be sustained if the nascent industrial and energy system transitions continue,” they said.
“I wouldn’t call it a significant decline, but it’s stability,” Professor Guan told The Daily Beast.
But from an analysis of the Chinese government’s data by Greenpeace released in May this year, the picture painted isn’t pretty. The study showed that there has been a sharp increase of 4 percent in carbon emissions in just first three months of 2018.
Lately, China has invested a lot on energy-intensive industries during 2017. Whatever the country has progressed in last decade wouldn’t be of any value if the same trend continues. If the pace continues it would be the fastest rise in emissions since 2011.
The analysis means that 2013 may have been a false peak in emissions, and the worst is still yet to come.