China carbon emissions in retreat after ‘structural break’ in economy

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions fell from 2014 to 2016 and might already have peaked, according to a study published on Monday, with structural economic changes allowing Beijing to meet targets earlier than expected.

China vowed before the Paris climate talks in 2015 to bring CO2 emissions to a peak by “around 2030”, and the country’s top climate official, Xie Zhenhua, has already said it could meet the pledge ahead of time.

But the study, published by Nature Geoscience, said “in retrospect, the commitment may have been fulfilled even as it was being made”, with emissions hitting a record 9.53 gigatonnes in 2013 and declining in the following three years, dropping to 9.2 gigatonnes in 2016.  Reuters

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