I noted this juxtaposing today, and thought I would share it. First this story from Reuters today:
EU capped emissions fall below expectations
* Carbon prices drop to record low
* Power sector down 3.1 pct, others off by 0.5 pct
* Germany emissions down 1.2 pct; UK off 7.2 pct (Releads with record low carbon price, adds UBS analyst quote)
By Jeff Coelho
LONDON, April 2 (Reuters) – Carbon prices plunged to record lows on Monday after data showing emissions in the European Union’s main scheme to fight greenhouse gases dropped below expectations last year.
Carbon dioxide emissions in the EU’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) fell by 2.4 percent in 2011 from 2010, prompting carbon prices to fall by more than 11 percent to well below 7 euros a tonne.
While the preliminary data published by the European Commission on Monday suggests the bloc is on track to achieve its 2020 climate target, it also confirms a fall in power production due to weak industrial output and a slowing economy.
Many analysts had expected a slight rise in emissions for the year.
“The fall was mainly attributable to lower power generation and stagnating industrial production,” Matteo Mazzoni, an analyst at Nomisma Energia, told Reuters.
Now this one from WSJ:
China Uses Nearly as Much Coal as Rest of World Combined, EIA Says
By CASSANDRA SWEET
China’s use of coal has grown quickly over the last decade and now rivals the amount of coal consumed by the rest of the world combined, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said Tuesday.
China consumed 3.8 billion short tons, or 3.45 billion metric tons, of coal in 2011, nearly half the world’s total consumption, the EIA said, citing international data.
A short ton, a measurement used in the U.S., is equal to 0.9 metric ton, a measurement used in most other countries.
Electricity generation in China has grown more than threefold since 2000, driving ever greater demand for coal, the EIA said.
China was also the world’s largest coal producer in 2011, producing more than 3.5 billion metric tons, or nearly 46% of global coal production that year, according to data published by the International Energy Agency. China was also the world’s largest net importer of coal in 2011, importing about 177 million metric tons of coal, according to the IEA.
The U.S. produced a little more than one billion metric tons of coal in 2011, or nearly 13% of the world supply, according to the IEA.
So on one hand, we have draconian regulations that are stagnating the economies of the countries in the EU, while at the same time, China is thumbing their nose at the idea and going at coal like pigs in a buffet line.
Nothing the western world does is going to make one bit of difference in the scheme of things, except to cripple their own economies while China laughs.