New study shows that China’s new coal-burning power plant capacity in 2020 is more than 3 times the rest of the world
Before 1970, China was one of the most impoverished nations in the world. Thanks to the western nations and Japan, China became a member of the World Trade Organization, which later helped the Communist nation become the world’s largest manufacturing country.
In just 40 years, China became the world’s second superpower and a force to be reckoned with on the world scene. As China becomes an economic powerhouse, so does the country flexes its military muscles and no one, not even the United States, dares stands in its way or tell China what to do and what it cannot do.
As China continues to dominate the world in manufacturing and global economic output, so is its appetite for energy. China needs a huge amount of energy to support and power its growing manufacturing sector. Unlike the United States that is governed based on polls, public opinion, social and environmental interests, and corporate media narratives, China is governed by the Chinese Communist Party which implements policies that are in the best interest of the country.
Just a few months ago, the global press and the corporate media that controls 90 percent of the news you hear, praised Chinese President Xi Jinping for his pledged to make the country “carbon neutral” by 2060. However, according to new international research, China put 38.4 gigawatts (GW) of new coal-fired power capacity into operation in 2020, which is more than three times the amount built elsewhere around the world and potentially undermining its short-term climate goals.
According to a report from Reuters, Chinese regulators have come under fire for failing to properly control the coal power sector, a major source of climate-warming greenhouse gas. The report from Global Energy Monitor (GEM), a U.S. think tank, and the Helsinki-based Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA) further shows that even after China decommissioned some of its coal power plants, “China’s coal-fired fleet capacity rose by a net 29.8 GW in 2020, as the rest of the world made cuts of 17.2 GW.”
Lauri Myllyvirta, the lead analyst at CREA, said, “The runaway expansion of coal-fired power is driven by electricity companies’ and local governments’ interest in maximizing investment spending, more than a real need for new capacity.”
Just last year, China approved the construction of a further 36.9 GW of coal-fired capacity, three times more than a year earlier, bringing the total under construction to 88.1 GW. To date, China now has 247 GW of coal power under development, enough to supply the whole of Germany, Reuters wrote.
Meanwhile, a team of central government environmental inspectors delivered a scathing assessment of China’s energy regulator, accusing Chinese officials of planning failures and focusing too much on guaranteeing energy supply to support its growing economy.
The question is, who is going to stand up to China and stop it from burning more coal? If history is a guide, China has been burning coal since 1978, and none of the environmentalists here in the United States nor the United States government has done anything to stop China from polluting the planet.