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.
Menghua Railway, China’s LONGEST coal transporting railway line, is expected to be put in operation in Oct. The 1,837-km railway will carry 200 million tonnes of coal annually from N China's Inner Mongolia to E China's Jiangxi. pic.twitter.com/sFXpCjplaN
— People's Daily, China (@PDChina) July 23, 2019
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: WorldBank.org
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?