Energy

729 Items

Aiming for Zero Carbon Emissions in China

AP Photo

Decarbonization Initiatives in China

    Authors:
  • Jonathan Edel-Hänni
  • Christian Gibbons
  • Celia Carbone
| Fall/Winter 2018-2019

As the single largest greenhouse gas emitter in the world and the source of almost 30 percent of the CO2 released into our atmosphere, China faces an enormous challenge in reaching its goal of zero or negative emissions—known as deep decarbonization.

Henry Lee, Director of the Environment and Natural Resources Program (ENRP), and Dan Schrag, Co-Director of the Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, head a team of researchers from the U.S. and China who have been examining China’s work in achieving deep decarbonization in the People’s Republic. The team plans to publish its findings in a book to be released in 2019. 

South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

Republic of Korea via Flickr

Journal Article - Georgetown Journal of Asian Affairs

An Analysis of Moon Jae-in's Nuclear Phase-out Policy

| Winter 2019

Although South Korea adopted nuclear energy later than countries like the United States, Russia, or France, the country, until recently, has been considered to have one of the most successful civil nuclear power programs in the world, with a fully-devel- oped supply chain, a remarkable record in constructing and operating nuclear power plants (NPPs), and the ability to compete and win contracts to supply NPPs abroad. The fortune of South Korea’s nuclear program has seemingly come to an end, however, with the election of Moon Jae-in. The new South Korean President promised to reduce the country’s dependence on nuclear energy, and has, since taking office, implemented measures to phase out this type of electricity generation.

In this paper, following a brief history of the development of nuclear energy in South Korea, the root causes that instilled public distrust of nuclear energy and Moon Jae-in’s phase-out policy are discussed. Subsequently, by analyzing the validity of Moon’s plan, I argue that this phase-out policy is not beneficial for the long-term sustainability of South Korea’s economy in general, and of the Korean nuclear industry in particular. The paper concludes with policy recommendations for a more balanced nuclear policy that can accommodate public opinion and, at the same time, ensure energy security and provide other economic and diplomatic benefits.

Visitors look at the models of oil tanker shaped floating nuclear reactors and oil rigs showcased at the display booth of China's state-owned China National Nuclear Corporation during the China International Exhibition on Nuclear Power Industry in Beijing. April 27, 2017 (Andy Wong/Associated Press).

Andy Wong/Associated Press

Journal Article - Maritime Issues

China's Planned Floating Nuclear Power Facilities in South China Sea: Technical and Political Challenges

| Nov. 21, 2018

The operation of the fleet of Chinese floating nuclear power plants in the South China Sea carries with it numerous safety and security risks that may have widespread consequences to not only China but also to Southeast Asia and beyond.

coal-fired power plant in Shuozhou, Shanxi, China

Wikimedia CC/Kleineolive

Journal Article - Nature Sustainability

Managing China's Coal Power Plants to Address Multiple Environmental Objectives

    Authors:
  • Fabian Wagner
  • M.V. Ramana
  • Haibo Zhai
  • Mitchell J. Small
  • Carole Dalin
  • Xin Zhang
  • Denise L. Mauzerall
| November 2018

China needs to manage its coal-dominated power system to curb carbon emissions, as well as to address local environmental priorities such as air pollution and water stress. In this article, the authors examine three province-level scenarios for 2030 that represent various electricity demand and low-carbon infrastructure development pathways.

a man looks up near smoke spewing from a chimney near the Jiujiang steel and rolling mills in Qianan

AP/Ng Han Guan, File

Journal Article - Nature Sustainability

Air Quality–Carbon–Water Synergies and Trade-offs in China's Natural Gas Industry

    Authors:
  • Yue Qin
  • Lena Höglund-Isaksson
  • Edward Byers
  • Kuishuang Feng
  • Fabian Wagner
  • Denise L. Mauzerall
| Sep. 14, 2018

Both energy production and consumption can simultaneously affect regional air quality, local water stress and the global climate. Identifying the air quality–carbon–water interactions due to both energy sources and end-uses is important for capturing potential co-benefits while avoiding unintended consequences when designing sustainable energy transition pathways. The authors examine the air quality–carbon–water interdependencies of China's six major natural gas sources and three end-use gas-for-coal substitution strategies in 2020.

A satellite view of the Gansu Dunhuang Solar Park, a photovoltaic power station under construction in Gansu Provence, as seen on June 9, 2018.

DigitalGlobe, CNES/Airbus, Google Earth, used with permission

Report - Environment and Natural Resources Program, Belfer Center

Harvard-Tsinghua Workshop on Low-Carbon Development and Public Policy

| September 2018

The Belfer Center’s Environment and Natural Resources Program and the Center for Science, Technology, and Education Policy at Tsinghua University held the fifth annual Tsinghua-Harvard Workshop on Low-Carbon Development and Public Policy. This event brought together leading experts on climate and energy from academic, business, and government communities in both the United States and China. This year’s workshop focused on electricity systems and renewable energy penetration.

A Tesla Model 3 charges using a Mobile Charger 2.0, 29 July 2017.

Steve Jurvetson

Paper - Environment and Natural Resources Program, Belfer Center

Charging the Future

| September 2018

Electric vehicles (EVs) have advanced significantly this decade, owing in part to decreasing battery costs. Yet EVs remain more costly than gasoline fueled vehicles over their useful life. This paper analyzes the additional advances that will be needed, if electric vehicles are to significantly penetrate the passenger vehicle fleet.

Smoke rises above the skyline of Beijing on a moderately polluted day, Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein

Paper - Environment and Natural Resources Program, Belfer Center

High-resolution Carbon Emissions Data for Chinese Cities

| August 2018

China is currently the world’s largest energy consumer and CO2 emitter, and its cities contribute 85% of the total CO2 emissions in China. Given the magnitude and growth rate of Chinese cities’ carbon emissions, cities are considered to be the key areas for implementing policies designed to adapt to climate change and mitigate CO2 emissions.

Elizabeth Arnold and Alice Rogoff speak to HKS students and community members about the dire need for a more complete Arctic media narrative on Tuesday, February 27, 2018. (Belfer Center Media Services)

Belfer Center Media Services

News - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

From Polar Bears to People: Getting the Arctic Climate Change Story Right

    Author:
  • Jonathan Edel-Hänni
| May 03, 2018

The Arctic is region is growing rapidly in global prominence, due in large part to the environmental changes caused by global warming. Rising temperatures and the receding sea ice reveal untapped natural resources and lucrative new trade routes. Non-Arctic nations, including China and India, are joining in the discourse on the region as new economic opportunities open up. Meanwhile, the four million human residents of the land north of the Arctic circle, many of them Indigenous peoples, are facing the reality of dramatically changing life because of human-caused climate change and an uncertain future.