Western nations are contributing to China's CO2 emissions,
according to a report from the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and
Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
"Western countries such as Norway are outsourcing pollution to
China and other countries in the developing world," said Rasmus
Reinvang from WWF-Norway, co-author of the report.
This is saving European countries billions of euros on clean
development mechanism (CDM) projects set up under the Kyoto
Protocol, which allow rich countries to buy carbon credits from
developing nations to meet CO2 emission targets.
The report, released in Beijing and Oslo yesterday, said
Norway's increasing imports of electronics, machinery and other
products is driving manufacturing, energy use and greenhouse gas
emissions in China.
It shows that CO2 emissions from products manufactured in China
and exported to Norway have almost tripled from 2001 to 2006 to
reach 6.8 million tons. The report claims that greenhouse gas
emissions produced by the average Norwegian household are close to
the Chinese average of 3.8 tons.
"The report should contribute to a more factual debate about the
responsibility of different countries in a post-2012 global climate
regime. Western countries bear large responsibility for CO2
emissions in China," said Li Lin, head of conservation strategies
Greenhouse gas emissions in Western countries have generally
flattened over the past decade as a result of the transfer of
energy-intensive industries from developed to developing
But global emissions are still rising, due largely to rapid
emissions growth in developing economies like China and India.
"If the developing world's production for Western consumers had
taken place inside the European carbon trading system, our rough
estimates show that carbon credit prices would amount to 51 billion
euros per year," said Reinvang.
"This indicates the minimum investment developed nations should
make in technology transfer through CDM projects to ensure emission
reductions in the developing world."
(China Daily January 15, 2008)