China's Emissions Lowered Slightly
A new study in Nature has put China’s carbon emissions slightly below previous estimates. The study says that official government reports actually underestimate the amount of coal, oil and natural gas that China is burning but that the coal is of much lower quality and contains less carbon. They do this on the basis of the ash that the coal produces. Chinese coal produces 27 percent ash while the figure is only 14 percent for the United States. The adjustment does not make a whole lot of difference but puts the number in the lower range of previous estimates as the graph indicates. The Nature estimate is the black line at the bottom of estimates for both electrical generation and cement manufacture. Since China is the world’s leading burner of coal, this adjustment reduces world emissions by about 2.8 percent.