China Environment Publications
InsightOut Issue 2 - Missed Opportunity? Chinese Clean Energy Foreign Direct Investment in the United StatesJun 10, 2015
When foreign investors locate new energy projects in the United States, U.S. workers and consumers benefit. These investments, particularly in clean energy, help maintain and upgrade infrastructure, reduce carbon pollution, lower energy costs, and increase the nation’s resilience to extreme weather events and global oil market shocks.
The long-standing disputes over territory and maritime resources in the South China Sea have rapidly escalated, with China's claim over 90% of the territory overlapping with the claims of the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Brunei.
The water-energy-food choke point is forcing a new reckoning. Three colliding trends—declining freshwater reserves, booming energy demand, and uncertain grain supplies—are disrupting economies, governments, and environments around the world. As the world’s most populous country and biggest energy consumer, China’s energy, food, and environmental security is threatened as it hits these choke points. How Chinese policymakers deal with these water-energy-food confrontations will have significant domestic and global consequences.
Natural gas has emerged as a potential game changer on China’s path to reduce its reliance on coal and shift to cleaner energy sources. This shift, however, is bound to require costly investments, raise energy prices, and dampen economic competitiveness in the short term.
China has set an ambitious goal to add more than 8 GW of distributed solar generation by the end of 2014 -- over half of the total solar power capacity in the U.S. now. However, China is facing many challenges to meet this goal.
Four essays present perspectives on the ideas behind smart cities from New York, Ahmedabad, São Paulo, and Beijing.
China is a country of superlatives and contradictions, especially when it comes to energy – it is not only the largest producer and consumer of coal, but also the largest investor in renewable energy. Since 2010, China has been the world’s biggest and fastest growing market for wind power, which the government has prioritized for its cleaner energy and job creation potential. But waste and poor planning have left many new wind farms idle or disconnected from power grids.
China accounts for 28.7% of the world’s installed wind power capacity. China is also the fastest growing market for wind power in the world.
China consumes about half of the world’s pork. The average pig in China produces 5.3 kg of waste each day, which contains nutrients, heavy metals, and pharmaceutical residues.
By 2020, coal consumption in China is projected to increase by 30 percent, and already, 20 percent of water withdrawn in the country goes to coal mining, processing, and cooling of coal-fired power plants. The water intensity of the coal industry is a significant quandary for a country that is already facing a water scarcity crisis (water availability per capita is one-quarter the global average).