China overtake US in energy consumption

Since records began the US has been the world’s biggest energy user. The bulk of China’s energy demand comes from industry and infrastructure, but individual consumption is also rising, albeit from a low base. The worrying aspect of this is that it will have to consume a lot more energy to provide its 1.3bn citizens with a lifestyle comparable to those in the US or Europe. Last year China sold more cars than in the US. “There are contradictory attitudes about China’s rise in international society. On one hand, people want China to boost the global economy. On the other, they hope China will not emit too much greenhouse gas. Decision-makers here have a clear idea that they want to pioneer a new path away from the current dangerous model of development. But it is unprecedented in human history for a nation to deal with this challenge, while coping with a huge population and relatively little land and resources.” The Climate Group. The graphic below comes from the Guardian Newspaper.

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