WSJ: US Emissions Cuts Will be “Swamped” by Indian and Chinese Growth

WSJ: US Emissions Cuts Will be “Swamped” by Indian and Chinese Growth

Essay by Eric Worrall

China’s new coal capacity since Chinese Premier Xi Jinping signed the Paris Agreement almost matches the USA’s total coal capacity. 

China’s Coal Power Boom

Beijing is building more coal-fired capacity than the rest of the world combined, U.S. climate lectures notwithstanding.

An unspoken truth of the climate-change crusade is this: Anything the U.S. does to reduce emissions won’t matter much to global temperatures. U.S. cuts will be swamped by the increases in India, Africa and especially China. Look no further than China’s boom in new coal-fired electricity.

S&P Global Commodity Insights recently estimated that China is planning or building coal-fired power plants with a total capacity of at least 100 gigawatts. Those are merely the projects whose development status is confirmed, so the real number is almost certainly higher. Total U.S. power capacity is some 1,147 gigawatts. One gigawatt is enough energy to power as many as 770,000 homes.

Since China signed the Paris pact, its coal-fired power capacity has increased by some 185 gigawatts, S&P Global Commodity Insights estimated earlier this summer. The U.S. has decreased its coal capacity by about 80 gigawatts since late 2015. The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported in January that U.S. operational coal capacity was 209.6 gigawatts.

Read more (paywalled): https://www.wsj.com/articles/chinas-coal-power-boom-beijing-xi-jinp...

 

China has more industrial capacity than the United States. It is only a matter of time until this advantage becomes a major geopolitical issue.

China is attempting to convert that industrial capacity advantage i..., with admittedly mixed results – but they won’t stay incompetent in the military sphere forever. 

For now, the USA still has a chance to play industrial capacity catchup, by pursuing Trump like energy and economic policies. But that opportunity is rapidly slipping away. 

This failure to keep up will eventually have real consequences.

For example, China is currently staying out of the Ukraine conflict. But what if they decide to get more involved?

China’s immense industrial capacity could be used to provide a level of supply to Russian forces, and any Chinese “volunteers” who travel to the front lines, that the USA and Western powers would struggle to match.

The Chinese learn fast – any battlefield technology gap would rapidly close, if China committed to helping Russia win.

Even worse, the US military is dependent on Chinese components.

It is possible if China stopped supplies, there would be a period of months, if not years, during which the USA would find it difficult to respond to a Chinese escalation, once current military stocks were exhausted.

 

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Maine as Third World Country:

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Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT

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(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

https://pinetreewatch.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/

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