China Burns Over Half Of The World’s Coal And Will Account For 50% Of Global CO2 Emissions By 2030

Today, 30% of the globe’s CO2 emissions come from China. In 10 years, China’s emissions alone will match the rest of world’s emissions combined. China continues to build hundreds of coal plants today. So why are the rest of us spending $600 billion every year on CO2 emissions mitigation?

China overtook the United States as the world’s largest CO2 emitter in 2008 (Liu et al., 2019).

Image Source: Liu et al., 2019

It only took 7 years for China’s emissions percentage to double that of the USA’s. As of 2015, China accounted for 30% of global emissions (Shan et al., 2018) compared to the USA’s 15%.

Much of the reason for China’s emissions domination is because its citizens consume more than 50% of the world’s coal.

China is in the process of building 100s of new coal plants, with plans to add a new coal plant every 2 weeks for the next 12 years.

According to the People’s Daily, China, the country’s longest coal transporting railway, carrying 200 million tonnes of coal from north to east China every year, is now (October, 2019) in operation.

Due to its exponentially-growing energy demands, China will be responsible for 50% of the globe’s CO2 emissions within 10 years (Liu et al., 2019).

Why should the rest of us spend $89 trillion to reduce CO2 emissions?

According to proponents of CO2 mitigation policies, the cost of infrastructure changes required to reduce CO2 emissions to acceptable levels is $89 trillion by 2030.

Image Source:

Per a scolding, we’re-not-spending-enough-on-climate article published in the journal Nature, we’re already spending about $600 billion annually on CO2 mitigation.

“[T]otal climate-related financing was $510 billion to $530 billion in 2017,” which is much higher than the $360 billion spent in 2012. “The UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), put it at $681 billion in 2016” (Yeo, 2019).

So we’re spending 100s of billions to 10s of trillions to reduce CO2 emissions in Western countries.

Meanwhile, China continues to build hundreds of new coal plants and grow its carbon-intensive infrastructure, thwarting any and all efforts to reduce net global emissions.

Why are we doing this?

24 responses to “China Burns Over Half Of The World’s Coal And Will Account For 5024 Of Global CO2 Emissions By 2030”

  1. Gus

    The proper question to ask is not why we are doing this. The proper question to ask is why *they*, the Chinese, are doing this.

    And the answer is… because they know, from their own scientists no less, that the alleged “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming” is baloney. So, they have no compunction that would drive them to handicap their own economy and future the way the Europeans are doing it to themselves.

    And, yes, the Chinese “talk the talk,” at every conference at which they’re present, showing off their windmills and solar farms. And they do this to keep the myth alive, so that even more energy-starved and overtaxed EU companies would move their manufacturing operations, even headquarters, to China!

    1. tom0mason

      Yes Gus,

      Chinese research foretells the real possibility of a cooling world …

  2. tom0mason

    But at least China is sticking to their ‘Paris Accord’ commitments.
    😉 hahahaha!

  3. Sean

    I know the climate champions are aware of the term “CO2 leakage” where CO2 abatement in one area leads to exporting the work to another region where CO2 abatement is not required because of developing country status. China has taken this to the bank and has even designed their climate goals around this approach as their Paris objective is to reduce their emissions per unit of GDP. Western Europe is facilitating the success of China’s approach by forcing energy intensive industries offshore (think solar panel production, raw materials manufacture, etc.) And no one knows how to move up the food chain to higher value products faster than the Chinese allowing them to increase their GDP to emissions ratio even more rapidly.

  4. SebastianH

    Ah, the old kindergarten dilemma. You watch another kid do something and want to do it as well even though you recognize it is not the sane thing to do, but kind of looks fun to not care about anything for once 😉

    P.S.: Since you are comparing the US with China. What is the current per capita emission figure? Is it still double as high in the US than in China?

    1. Adam Gallon

      Who cares?
      It’s either total CO2 emissions you’re concerned about, or you’re just a bullshitter.
      You’re a bullshitter.

      1. Yonason

        His undergrad degree is from a preschool, where he majored in whining. His grad degree, of which he is obviously overly proud, is in sandbagging, at which he is not very good. Comic relief here, at best, nothing more.

  5. posa

    Coal is China’s only home-based energy source. To avoid economic warfare of sanctions, embargoes and Regime Change, China must use what it has. In particular, the massive drive for EVs will allow China to cut imported petroleum, by substituting electricity generated by coal plants for petro.

    So, yeah, coal is in China’s future. Big Time. Meanwhile, investment in Green Tech has been slashed 40%! A concerted effort to clean up coal plant pollution emissions has been largely successful.

    Apparently Beijing never bought into CO2 Driven Climate Change hysteria. Let the West commit economic suicide.. China and their allies will dominate the rest of the century.

  6. Jerry

    Friend of Science produced a report on the effectiveness in reducing emissions of the Super-critical Boilers used in Canadian coal fired power plants. (Burning Questions)
    Youtube: Burning Questions-Questioning the Alberta Phase Out Campaign

    It is possible to reduce emissions from the burning of coal.

  7. Climate Heretic

    China will only do whats in the best interests for China. In other words they will say one thing, but do the complete opposite. Think of it this way. China has two faces. Panda Face and Dragon Face.

    The solution to all this madness will be molten salt reactors. Why?

    a) Coal and oil will ‘eventually run out’.
    b) Nuclear Powered Water Reactors will be ‘phased out’ for various reasons.
    c) Wind and Solar will never replace the current demand for the energy that the world uses today and in the future.

    This is not what I believe, but WHAT I KNOW.

    Climate Heretic

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  9. Dave Ward

    “So why are the rest of us spending $600 billion every year on CO2 emissions mitigation?”

    “The Rest of US” are not doing the spending – at least, not voluntarily. It’s Green obsessed governments spending OUR taxes, without bothering to ask first…

  10. drumphish

    Nobody in China protests, they’re too busy working, Uyghurs have jobs, whether they want one or not. Hong Kong, different story. Who do the protesters in Hong Kong think they are, the French?

    “Last month, the Norwegian government announced it was scrapping plans for a national roll out of wind projects because of fierce local opposition. That decision came after sustained protests against the construction of a 60-megawatt wind project on Frøya Island. According to Reuters, Norwegian police were forced to intervene “after protesters pitched tents at the site and parked cars along a road built to transport turbine parts in a bid to block construction.”

    “People used to talk around the water cooler about being sent to the salt mines as punishment. It was a joke. Tesla sends kids to cobalt mines – so that virtue signaling rich people can drive around in high-performance electric cars.

    It’s not funny.”

    “China’s coal use hit a high of 4.24 billion metric tons in 2013. Despite annual reductions from 2014 through 2016, it now appears headed back to the 4-billion ton mark.”

    Plenty of coal in China.

    People in China prefer electricity, Shanghai has lights on 24/7/365. If the lights go out, forget it. Won’t happen, no need to worry.

    I saw a wind turbine undergo some maintenance two days ago while driving by a wind park on my way for a day trip to the next big town down the road.

    While at the destination, I noticed a truck hauling a blade section.

    On the return trip, a stop for gas, I overheard someone say in a conversation, “They brought them to our landfill.” Sounded like they were referring to the old discarded blades, the logical deduction. The recycling conundrum for wind turbine blades has only just begun. Just leave them in rows in an open field, the the wind and the sun and the rain will do the rest.

    Sow the wind, reap a whirlwind.

    Norwegians know how to make it stop.

    1. tom0mason

      “Nobody in China protests” or is it that no protest in China are reported, when you have an authoritarian Communist style government you get all the news they approve.

  11. bonbon

    Why are “we” doing this, should be why are “they”, our very own wannabee imperialists doing this in our name?

    Well the answer is obvious – to go to war with China. Hey, we had that with the British Opium Wars and China has never forgotten. Hong Kong and Xinjiang are merely warm-ups and China knows it.

    van der Leyen is having a lurch in the directon of a EU border CO2 tax. Whether such a mini-Barborossa is in the cards can be checked with her EU Defense Union on full steam ahead despite Brexit.

    This was never about a gas molecule that Greta can see, but about war that anyone with some knowledge of history can easily see.

    President Trump does not want any of that, and look what “they”, the very same regime-change State-Dept meddlers, are doing to him. The exact same crowd that put Ukraine in the cross hairs for some nuclear parody of a Barborossa.

    Much better to put these imperial wannabees out to grass with Glass-Steagall before their imploding financial sandbox smothers us all.

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  13. Steve

    What is wrong with nuclear power?

    1. tom0mason

      Steve, you may be interested in the latest in the small nuclear reactor power generator has pass it’s Phase 4 approval …
      Small nuclear reactor proposal passes latest hurdle. The reactor is the world’s first SMR to undergo design certification review by the NRC, after passing phase 4 of the review process. It is on track for approval by September 2020.
      SMR supporters see the reactors as a safer, more affordable nuclear power option.
      Phase 4 of the review involves completion of the advanced safety evaluation report (SER) with no open items. It signifies near-completion of the technical review.
      Phase 5 involves a review by the NRC’s Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS), while Phase 6 involves preparation of the final SER.
      NuScale vice president of regulatory affairs Tom Bergman said the company appreciates “the NRC’s efforts to streamline Phase 5″. He added: “We expect that Phase 5 will be completed on or ahead of the original schedule in June 2020.”

      The Utah Associated Municipal Power System is planning a 12-module SMR plant in Idaho, based on the NRC’s certified design and scheduled for operation by the mid-2020s.


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