China, a fully developed and net-zero economy by 2050

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It is technically and economically feasible for China to become a fully developed economy and reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, according to a new report released by the Energy Transitions Commission and Rocky Mountain Institute.

According to the report “China 2050: A Fully Developed Rich Zero-Carbon Economy,” to achieve this objective, the investment required can easily be affordable given China’s high savings and investment rate.

The impact of the investments on China’s gross domestic product per capita in 2050 will be minimal.

By committing to making the investments required, China will in turn spur innovation, deliver large improvements in local air quality and enable China to establish technological leadership across multiple industries.

The report provides recommendations on how China can reduce energy demand. These include:

  1. The electrifying of surface transport and building heating. This would help improve the standard of living by three times the current levels while reducing primary energy demand by 45% from 132 EJ today to 73 EJ in 2050. This would see a dramatic change in the sources of energy, with fossil fuel demand falling over 90%, while non-fossil energy would expand by 3.4 times.
  2. The decarbonisation of energy generation and expanding capacity by around 15,000TWh in 2050, compared with only 7,000TWh in 2018. Approximately 75% of total electricity generation could be from wind and solar resources with a portfolio of grid flexibility and storage options.

The full report is available here

The energy transition is a hot topic disrupting the energy industry and is also set for discussion at the Asian Utility Week and POWERGEN Asia conference. Click here to register to attend and for more information about the event.