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Expert refutes demonization of China's energy consumption

08-02-2010 16:27 BJT

In 2009, China's energy consumption was in fact lower than the United States, and the United States' per capita energy use was 4.5 times as much as China's, said Wang Zhen, dean of the China University of Petroleum's School of Business Administration.

In a report released on July 19, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said that China surpassed the United States to become the world's biggest energy consumer. According to the IEA, China's energy consumption was equivalent to nearly 2.3 billion tons of oil in 2009, 0.4 percent more than United State's 2.17 billion tons.

The IEA's point is to persuade the world that China is the largest energy consumer and the largest emitter of carbon dioxide rather than to tell the world how much energy China consumed in 2009, Wang said.

"We have to look into its hidden intentions and the effect of massive media coverage," he said.

China's per capita energy use much lower than the U.S.

Wang said that China has made great contributions to and sacrificed some of its interests for stable energy supply and environmental protection.

"However, some countries and international organizations still blame China for skyrocketing oil prices and urge China to bear the responsibility in the global energy sector," Wang said.

China consumed the equivalent of 3.1 billion tons of standard coal in 2009, and per capita energy use was only equivalent to 2.3 tons of coal. In addition, China's industry sector accounted for over 90 percent of the country's overall energy use.

In the same period, the 300 million U.S. residents consumed the equivalent of 3.1 billion tons of standard coal. The per capita energy consumption in the U.S. was the equivalent of 10.4 tons of standard coal, 4.5 times as high as that of an average Chinese resident.

"The United States has transferred the manufacturing of some energy-intensive products to China, and it is obvious that the American lifestyle leads to the American's high energy use," Wang said.

He added that China has the rights to speed up economic development and improve people's livelihoods.

"It is unreasonable for an international organization or a developed country to criticize China based on a general figure of energy consumption," he said.


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