Saturday, May 08, 2010

Now There's an Understated Headline !

China's Energy Use Threatens Goals on Warming.
This, and likely what will go on in India and other developing nations, has always been the elephant in the room.
Coal-fired electricity and oil sales each climbed 24 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, on the heels of similar increases in the fourth quarter.
Zhou Xi’an, a National Energy Administration official, said in a statement last month that fossil fuel consumption was likely to increase further in the second quarter of this year because of rising car ownership, diesel use in the increasingly mechanized agricultural sector and extra jet fuel consumption for travelers to the Shanghai Expo.
Complicating energy efficiency calculations is the fact that China’s National Bureau of Statistics has begun a comprehensive revision of all of the country’s energy statistics for the last 10 years, restating them with more of the details commonly available in other countries’ data. Western experts also expect the revision to show that China has been using even more energy and releasing even more greenhouse gases than previously thought.
The article (well worth reading all of) notes as well that China's reduction goals are all energy efficiency goals, so overstate the effect overall in an environment of rapid eceonomic growth.
When I was in China what horrified me were the disks of coal being delivered to homes for burning in stoves. I am rather less freaked out about coal in electric power plants, and it is clear there is a shift going on in that direction.
As for whether I should freak out about all this, I rather tend to this:
h/t Roger Pielke Jr for the reference to the article
h/t Watts Up With That for the graphic


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