China’s Climate Pledge Means Opportunities for Cleantech Firms

China is increasing its focus on “low carbon” sectors, including energy efficiency, green buildings, water, waste, and transportation. Some of the nation’s moves could translate into big business opportunities for cleantech firms focusing on China.

The focus is outlined in a report, “Enhanced Actions on Climate Change,” that China submitted to the UN on June 30. It outlines how China will try to reduce its CO2 emissions and promises a “coordinated” effort when it comes to areas like new industrialization, urbanization and agricultural modernization.

Among the climate goals China commits to in the report:

– Seeing carbon dioxide emissions peak around 2030 if not earlier;

– Lowering carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by 60% to 65% from 2005 levels;

– Boosting the share of non-fossil fuels in primary energy consumption to around 20%; and

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– Increasing the forest stock volume by around 4.5 billion cubic meters over 2005 levels.

To hit these goals, China will need to produce 30 times more solar power than it did at the end of 2014, or nine times as much wind power, according to Bloomberg.

The report outlines numerous cleantech, sustainable, green and other areas where China will need to make large investments. The report lacks specificity but does present numerous potential opportunities for firms. Here are some of them, grouped by category,

Building Low Carbon Energy Systems:

– Enhance the clean use of coal.

– Increase capacity for wind power, solar power and thermal energy.

– Develop geothermal energy, bio-energy and maritime energy.

– Enhance the recovery and utilization of vent gas and oilfield-associated gas.

– Scale up distributed energy and strengthen the construction of a smart grid.

Building Energy Efficient and Low Carbon Industrial Systems:

– Strengthen the management of carbon emissions for new projects and actively control greenhouse gas emissions from industrial production.

– Construct a recycling based industrial system and develop a “circular economy” to increase recycling and the utilization of renewable resources.

– Control emissions from key industrial sectors through energy conservation and efficiency improvements.


– Work toward a goal of zero growth of fertilizer and pesticide use by 2020.

– Control methane emissions from rice fields and nitrous oxide emissions from farmland.

– Build  a recyclable agriculture system, including reutilization of agricultural, forestry and animals wastes.

Controlling Emissions from the Buildings and Transportation Sectors:

– Increase the share of green buildings in newly built buildings of cities and towns, to reach 50% by 2020.

– Promote energy efficiency in buildings and building construction and extend building life spans.

– Promote the reutilization and recovery of building waste.

– Promote the construction of green buildings and the use of renewable energy in buildings.

– Develop a green and low-carbon transportation system, including public transportation.

– Develop new energy vehicles and vessels and promote new types of alternative fuels.

Water Efficiency:

– Create a “water-saving society” in all aspects and increase the development and use of unconventional water resources, including recycled water, desalinated seawater and rain and flood water.

– Improve the construction of water conservation facilities for farmlands, improve irrigation to save water, and cultivate heat-resistant and drought-resistant crops.

The report also pledges that China will work to strengthen research and development and commercialization demonstration for low-carbon technologies, including “energy conservation, renewable energy, advanced nuclear power technologies and carbon capture, utilization and storage.” It also says China will “promote the technologies of utilizing carbon dioxide to enhance oil recovery and coal-bed methane recovery.”

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