How Much Does China Contribute To Global Warming

In recent years, global warming has become an increasingly hot topic as its devastating implications continue to take hold. And yet, one of the greatest contributors to this phenomenon remains one of the most overlooked: China. How much does China contribute to global warming? While some may assume that this is a simple question, the answer is far from straightforward.

Given that China is now the world’s second-largest polluter, situated second only to America, it is reasonable to assume that China plays an important role in the current climate crisis. Recent reporting from the nation’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment shows that China accounted for 28% of the world’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 2017, an immense number that accounts for part of the nine percent hike in annual global CO2 levels observed in the same year.

Yet, it is also important to note the strides China has taken towards mitigating the effects of global warming. For the past quarter-century, China has invested heavily in renewable energy sources and energy efficiency, subsequently reducing the country’s energy-related CO2 intensity by two-thirds since 2005. Beijing has also committed to an ambitious goal of achieving peak emissions by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2060. This progressive policy is indicative of greater recognition in China that the nation must rely less heavily upon non-renewable sources of energy if global warming is to be slowed.

At the same time, the situation of pollution in China is immensely complex. As individuals in the world’s most populous nation continually increase their obtaining power and socio-economic status, the demand for goods and services only continues to increase. As a result of their insatiable appetite for energy, China produces immense volumes of pollutants, resulting in hazardous levels of air and water pollutants in heavily populated cities such as Beijing and Shanghai. In some cases, this has caused a phenomenon eeriely referred to as “ airpocalypse”, a term used to describe the smoggy, almost opaque layers of air hovering above these cities.

Furthermore, China’s coal-dependent industries are responsible for producing the vast majority of these emissions. In fact, the country is responsible for producing nearly three-fourths of the emissions created by burning coal worldwide. While China is quickly transitioning away from this non-renewable source of energy, it is evident that the usage of coal produces immense amounts of emissions that are difficult to legislate and regulate, as modern methods are only just beginning to be applied.

Finally, it is worth mentioning that no matter how quickly and drastically China transitions away from fossil fuels, it will take time before the tangible effects of such measures are felt – longer, in fact, than the lifespan of the current generation. In an effort to comprehend the severity of the phenomenon and create a drastically improved future for the generations that follow, it is important for China’s youth and future generations to learn about global warming and the role their nation plays in it. Social media campaigns and educational initiatives have been deemed effective tools to create greater awareness and facilitate discourse on this important topic.

Thus, while China may have an integral role in the global climate crisis, it is also clear that the country is making lasting changes that could result in meaningful and lasting environmental change. As we strive towards a less polluted and more sustainable future, let us appreciate the strides China has taken towards mitigating the effects of global warming and continue to support initiatives that will create a brighter, more secure future for the generations that follow.

Ernestine Warren is a passionate environmentalist, author, and advocate for the protection of the Earth's precious resources. She has written extensively on the causes and effects of global warming, providing accurate information to help educate people on how to combat this major global problem. With a background in science and biology, Ernestine has the tools to help develop solutions that meet everyone's needs while minimizing environmental damage. Her hope is that each person can do their part for the planet and make a real difference to help reduce climate change.

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