In this posts I would like to take a look at China and see what their opinion is on renewable energy.
China is as we know, seen as most of us have been there, a massive country with lots of extremes and contrasts. I did some research and found the following results that I would like to share with you.
To begin I have found a graph that shows the amount of energy each an average citizen uses
Note that the graph only shows the average until 2010
As we look at this graph we can see that the average energy use per person is way below what a typical American uses or us Belgians. Of course it is true that with the rising prosperity the average energy use will continue to rise. You can see that China is on a rising curve whilst Belgium and the US have a more constant curve.
As we look at the next graph we see the amount of gigawatts China and other country’s produce
Pease note that the graph uses data from 2011 and very important that hydropower is NOT included in this graph.
When we add hydropower to this equation China produces total of 282 GW of renewable energy.
In 2011 China was also the biggest investor in green energy and this for the third year in a row.
This graph shows the amount invested as a percentage of the gross national product.
So when we look at these statistics you should conclude that China is doing a pretty good job right?
However, China is also the largest consumer of coal in the world. They are generating 68,7% of their electricity from coal ( in comparison the USA generates 49% of it’s electricity from coal). As we all know coal is a very pollutant energy resource, so China is as well the leader in renewable energy as in polluting energy.
As a conclusion I like to state that I really hope that China continues to invest on renewable energy and keeps on searching for options to eliminate as much as possible the use of coal, but we have to be realistic and look at ourselves too. You cannot blame them for growing and achieving a higher standard of living. I think it’s time for every country to take it’s responsibility and to keep on investing in renewable energy for a better future!