China Briefing, 12 August 2021: Beijing’s response to IPCC report; Climate ‘blue paper’; Coal price rises

MORE EXTREME WEATHER: “Heavy” and “extreme heavy” rain struck parts of Sichuan province in south-western China from Friday to Sunday, affecting more than 440,000 people and triggering 80,794 individuals to be left. The news, reported by state newswire China News Service, stated homeowners living downstream of a reservoir in Dazhou were displaced after the reservoirs water level exceeded the flooding limitation by 2.2 metres.

NUCLEAR: The possible expulsion of CGN– Chinas largest state-owned nuclear company– from all future power tasks in the UK would be “against the UKs interests”, Chinas embassy in London alerted, reported China Daily, a state-run paper. An embassy representative stated that a suspension of the nuclear cooperation in between China and the UK would stop the UK “gaining from Chinas sophisticated technology and capital financial investment”, among other effects. (China Briefing described the UK-China nuclear stress last month.).

Extra reading.

Welcome to Carbon Quicks China weekly digest. We handpick and explain the most important climate and energy stories from China over the previous 7 days.

WHO: The “blue paper” was released by CMAs Climate Change Centre, also known as the National Climate Centre (NCC). Established in 1995, the organisation supervises of developing a national-level environment os, according to a main pamphlet. Chao Qingchen, deputy editor of the paper, informed Beijing News that climate change is bringing “greater dangers” and “bigger effect” to China.

Analysis finds vast bulk of coal fleet unprofitable.

Snapshot

Other news.

A new “blue paper”– a report from a scholastic or a research group– has found that China has actually been “considerably affected” by climate modification. The paper, launched days prior to the IPCC report, said that China has actually seen an “certainly higher” warming rate than the international average.

New research study has actually examined the possible population change in the low elevation coastal zone of eastern Chinas Yangtze river delta during 1990 and 2100 and how sea level rise (SLR) would affect local residents. The paper composed: “Long-term pattern of population direct exposure to SLR will position significant obstacles to regional advancement and planning.

WHAT: China is a “sensitive” and “substantially affected” location of global environment change, according to a “blue paper” from the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), a state-affiliated public institution in charge of meteorological administration and research. The paper stated that Chinas surface area temperature had warmed at a rate of 0.26 C per years in between 1951 and 2020.

New science.

The increasing worldwide environmental repercussions of a weakening US-China crop trade relationshipNature Food.

WHEN: The analysis was released today and penned by Matt Gray, co-chief executive of TransitionZero. It came after a high-level political meeting instructed authorities at all levels to make sure adequate supply and stable costs of “bulk products” late last month. It likewise came after a group of Chinese officials visited Qinhuangdao, the countrys largest coal trading center, and Tangshan, the countrys largest steel-producing city, to survey coal supply and pricing, reported monetary outlet Yicai..

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WHY IT MATTERS: Chinas fuel cost volatility highlights the need for a “net-zero crackdown” in China, the analysis recommended. Gray told Carbon Brief that the pressure Chinas energy complex was under was partially a result of “misaligned policy rewards”. Gray noted that although there were blackouts and brownouts, coal power generators were shutting for upkeep to “prevent losses”. He added that, at the same time, bandwidth was only operating 40% of the time as provinces were “not incentivised” to trade with each other. He highlighted that the problem might show a “significant barrier” to Chinas carbon neutrality goal, if unresolved.

HOW: The CMA paper kept in mind that Chinas annual average precipitation showed an “increasing trend” in between 1961 and 2020, with an average increase of 5.1 mm every 10 years. The “increasing pattern” was “especially noteworthy” in the southern parts of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River, central and northern parts of the Tibetan Plateau and northern and western parts of Xinjiang, the paper stated. Over the period, “severe heavy rains events” increased while “extreme low temperature level events” decreased, the authors noted. They also discovered that there have been “significantly more” severe heat events since the mid-1990s..

WHERE: In another noteworthy relocation, the state economic coordinator and energy regulator recently bought 15 idle coal mines in five provincial-level areas to resume operations, reported state-run financial outlet jwview.com. Those 15 mines are positioned in Inner Mongolia, Shanxi, Shaanxi, Ningxia and Xinjiang and had actually gone idle after finishing their “joint pilot operation”– a stage prior to being allowed to run formally– the authorities stated in a statement. They directed the mines to extend their “pilot operation” for another year, which might increase the nations daily coal output by 150,000 tonnes, they included. The state economic planner said the other day that it anticipated the “coal supply and demand scenario” to “improve even more” due to increased production.

Secret developments.

COAL POWER: China can fulfill its energy security and climate goals by topping its coal-fired power at 1,100 gigawatts (GW)– the present level– during the 14th five-year plan duration which runs from 2021 to 2025, according to a study by Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the North China Electric Power University. This is due to the fact that renewables growth, a more flexible grid and demand-side resources might collaborate to fulfill electricity need development, Alvin Lin, environment and energy director of NRDCs China programme, informed Carbon Brief. Lin stated that coal-fired power plants might be “reserved in reserve”. Moreover, “coal power need to be run more flexibly so that it serves mainly to complement growing renewables, as part of the power system with brand-new energy at its core”, he added.

A brand-new research study has actually discovered that the US would deal with heightening nitrogen and phosphorus pollution and increasing irrigation water usage in its farming production as a result of consistent US-China trade tension. The scientists stated that the environmental impacts of the Beijing-Washington trade stress impact not just the 2 countries, however also other countries and areas through global trade, adding additional pressure on those currently stressed out environments. Dr Yao Guolin and Dr Zhang Xin, two of the papers authors from the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, told Carbon Brief: “Trade settlements have typically been focusing on its direct economic and political effects, however it also has profound influence on the environment for the two trade partners and the world, which will, in turn, have disqualified influence on their economic and social health and wellbeing.”.

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IPCC: Chinas Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said that the global community must have “complete confidence” in the nations environment actions after the newest IPCC report warned of “widespread, rapid and magnifying” environment modification, reported AFP via France 24. The ministry stated the nation was executing its environment dedications, including that “China has insisted on prioritising sustainable, green and low-carbon advancement”, the newswire wrote.

China has firmly insisted that it is executing its environment dedications following the release of the most current report by the UNs Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). A representative from Chinas foreign ministry said the international community must have “complete self-confidence” in Beijings environment actions.

WHAT: Rising fuel prices have made the vast majority of Chinas operating coal fleet “money negative” in the first half of this year, according to a brand-new report from TransitionZero, a London-based environment analytics company. The report said that the unprofitability of coal-fired power plants is “most likely the highest on record”, with just 29% of the systems estimated to have seen gains in the second quarter of 2021– compared to 67% in 2020. The analysis kept in mind that coal-fired power plants in the nation were just running “around half the time”, despite “prevalent” blackouts and brownouts. On the exact same topic, Reuters reported that Chinas coal buyers might deal with more price hikes in the second half of the year after security checks had actually impacted the output of coal mines.

Population pattern and direct exposure under sea level rise: Low elevation seaside zone in the Yangtze River Delta, 1990– 2100Climate Risk Management.

HOW: Chinas domestic thermal coal rates have actually increased 30% given that January, the TransitionZero analysis stated, citing data. It explained that Chinese coal electrical energy companies had actually tried to navigate a noted federal government ban on Australian coal considering that late last year by importing coal from Indonesia, Russia and the United States, which triggered the rate of these contracts to rise. “This price volatility dwarfs any financial impact from the just recently introduced nationwide emissions trading system (ETS),” the analysis included..

EXTREME WEATHER: A study released by Greenpeace East Asia last Thursday concluded that the annual variety of “severe hot days”– those with temperature levels at 33C or higher– has increased “significantly” in China, Japan and South Korea given that 1961 due to worldwide environment modification and urbanisation. The researchers evaluated temperature level data of 57 cities in the 3 countries and discovered that heat was getting here earlier in the year in more than 80% of them. Al Jazeera covered the study. Li Zhao, a scientist from Greenpeace East Asia, told Carbon Brief that the analysis was “a plain tip that all nations must leave nonrenewable fuel sources behind and transition to clean energy as rapidly as possible”.

Chinas warming rate surpasses worldwide average, paper states.

WHY IT MATTERS: The “blue paper” showed clear proof that human impact is triggering changes in the environment system in China, according to Prof Zhou Tianjun, a lead author of a chapter of the IPCC AR6. Prof Michael B McElroy from Harvard University informed Carbon Brief that the “blue paper” supplies an “essential” account and context of the contemporary modifications in Chinas climate system.

ETS: The trading volume of Chinas national emission trading plan (ETS) has been “reducing”, according to the Global Times. It stated that the figure was “a plain contrast” to that of the launch day, which stood at 4.1 m tonnes.

WHEN: CMA launched its findings last Wednesday, 5 days prior to the IPCC released its 6th evaluation report (AR6). AR6 stated that it is “indisputable” that people have warmed the planet, triggering “widespread and quick” changes to Earths oceans, ice and land surface area. It found that in 24 out of the 28 sample cities in China, the very first “hot day” of the year– determining 30C or greater in temperature level– had actually “shown up earlier” in between 2001 and 2020, compared to the previous 2 years.

Separately, brand-new analysis has discovered that the unprofitability of Chinas coal-fired power plants is “likely the greatest on record” due to rising coal prices. It stated that the country has actually seen “common” blackouts and brownouts– partial loss of electrical power– however coal power generators were shutting for maintenance to “avoid losses”. Chinese authorities have actually made a series of relocations just recently to increase coal production in a quote to take on surging costs and tight supply, reported Xinhua.

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WHAT: China is a “sensitive” and “significantly affected” location of worldwide environment change, according to a “blue paper” from the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), a state-affiliated public organization in charge of meteorological administration and research. WHY IT MATTERS: Chinas fuel cost volatility highlights the need for a “net-zero crackdown” in China, the analysis recommended. NUCLEAR: The prospective expulsion of CGN– Chinas largest state-owned nuclear business– from all future power projects in the UK would be “against the UKs interests”, Chinas embassy in London cautioned, reported China Daily, a state-run newspaper. An embassy spokesperson stated that a suspension of the nuclear cooperation between China and the UK would stop the UK “benefiting from Chinas sophisticated technology and capital financial investment”, among other effects. COAL POWER: China can fulfill its energy security and environment goals by topping its coal-fired power at 1,100 gigawatts (GW)– the existing level– throughout the 14th five-year plan duration which runs from 2021 to 2025, according to a research study by Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the North China Electric Power University.

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