Xi’s carbon neutral pledge signals sunny days for China’s clean energy sector

Chinese President Xi Jinping yesterday pledged to make China carbon neutral by 2060. The leader of the world’s  largest producer of greenhouse gases told a virtual UN Assembly that China planned to cut its carbon dioxide emissions to nearly zero over the next 40 years, in a move that is expected to require a radical reshaping of the world’s second-largest economy, and which could virtually eliminate domestic coal demand.
coal miner chinaWhat could sound the death knell for China’s coal-mining industry could, conversely, be great news for the growing number of domestic companies engaged in the production of energy storage, environmentally-friendly and energy-efficient equipment and, of course, its electrical vehicle manufacturers who were already looking at the beginning of a golden, carbon neutral era;  Electric Vehicle Output 2020 forecast a rise in global EV sales from 1.7 million today to 8.5m by 2025, to 26m by 2030 and to 54m by 2040, one third being manufactured in China (see also Evergrande lays cards on EV table).
This has precipitated huge demand for the batteries required to power EV and domestic demand and has turned China’s CATL into a global market leader with a 28% share of the global lithium-ion battery installation market.Energy storage installations are also due to increase exponentially, and not just in China. Latest forecasts from BNEF suggest that storage capacity could grow from 9GW/17GWh in 2018 to 1,095GW/2,850GWh by 2040. Just this week JD.com, one of China’s biggest online retailers, announced it was to install what it is describing as the world’s largest solar rooftop across its dozens of logistics buildings and warehouses. Total generation capacity is expected to be 200 MW with the panels coming online next year able to generate more than 160 GWh per annum.