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China's Climate Leadership Choice

Sieren Ernst's picture
Ethics & Environment

Sieren Ernst is the co-founder and CEO of the Climate Cost Project, a data and documentary non-profit focused on bringing to light the immediate costs of climate change to American communities....

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On the day that the United States withdrew from the Paris Accord, China and the EU jointly declared that they would continue to “lead the energy transition” and redouble their efforts to meet the Paris targets. Once scapegoated as the enfante terrible of the Copenhagen climate negotiations, the chance for China to be seen as the adult to America’s terrible child is a particularly rich irony. Seldom does the international stage afford such rapid reversals.

What does it mean for the United States to have ‘ceded leadership’ on a non-binding treaty where the collective emissions reduction commitments made by the parties don’t meet that agreement’s stated goal of limiting emissions global temperatures to between 1.5 and 2 degrees Celsius? Former U.S. State Department negotiator Andrew Light has worried that America’s abrogation will lead to monitoring and verification falling off the agenda of the international negotiations. American support for strong monitoring and verification would have been critical in an international climate regime where traded carbon pricing was used to incrementally draw down emissions, or where trade penalties were levied against countries who did not meet their targets. But these policies belong to a bygone dream of binding treaties and early action, left behind in the last century, before humanity emitted hundreds and billions more tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and signed the Paris Accord.

We have moved beyond the period in our natural history when a gradual energy transition, the kind brought on by slowly rising carbon prices, could be consistent with a two-degree warmer future to which Paris aspires. Collective inaction has eroded nuances; the question of climate leadership is now easily exposed through the examination of large questions—is a country directing its industrial policy at the level of trade, technology and investment in a way that is consistent with a two degree future–or not?

From this standard, progress and political leadership cannot be determined merely in the examination of country’s emissions trajectory, which has been altered in the United States and China by economic and technological forces, acting independently of political leadership. In the United States, hydraulic fracturing and directional drilling technology have opened previously uneconomical reserves and provided cheap, domestic natural gas that has led to a steep drop in the United States’ emissions since 2005.

This came about not by way of political leadership, but rather from the innovation of a well-heeled incumbent industry. Unconventional fossil fuels are central not just to America’s falling emissions, but also to its future climate policy. The contradiction is that to stay within the threshold of two degrees of warming, the world must leave existing fossil fuel reserves untouched, not develop the technology to reach new carbon reservoirs previously beyond the reach of mankind.

The United States’ claim to climate leadership stemmed from the development of the Clean Power Plan and the passage of the Paris Accords. But in setting both the intensity targets of the Clean Power Plan and the emissions reduction targets in the Paris Accords, which use an inflated baseline of 2005 emissions and commit to deep reductions only by 2050, the United States designed a policy that secured natural gas’s domestic market long enough not to threaten anyone’s payback periods or political horizons.

This contrasts sharply with Germany’s aggressive near-term targets for a 2020 target of a 40 percent reduction from 1990 emissions. Germany is able to aspire to this target because it made strong policy decisions years ago that have transformed the shape of its energy infrastructure, rather than letting its energy infrastructure transform the shape of its policy. Ten years ago, Germany put in place twenty-year feed-in tariffs at a price that would ensure profitability for renewable energy developers. The result is that wind and solar generation make up 45 percent of Germany’s installed capacity, and renewable energy makes up 30 percent of annual power generation.

Germany installed this capacity at a time when renewable energy was expensive, and the public has paid for this decision through higher renewable energy bills, acting as a loss leader for the rest of the world in bringing down the prices of green power. The world is now enjoying the benefits via commercially competitive solar and wind energy. China, in particular, benefited by being able to develop a solar industry on the strength of German demand. In the international climate negotiations, the idea that wealthy countries should pay for the development and commercialization of low-carbon technology seldom exits the realm of discussion. The actions of Germany have been an exception.

But the United States is also exporting the fruits of its carbon emissions revolution. Oil exports in the United States have increased by a factor of ten in the last decade. The same drilling technology that brought down American emissions has also made the United States the world’s largest producer of oil and gas. And like Germany’s solar fixation, American industry’s interest in unconventional fossil fuels has also spread. Chinese state-owned companies are heavily invested in U.S. domestic oil shale as well as other unconventional fossil fuel development around the world. This trend has accelerated, even as the Chinese government invests in renewable energy.

Further, the Chinese government has proved willing to buy, develop, and even expand on American drilling innovations to access marginal reserves, even at a loss. Just last month China claimed success in a trial for mining methane hydrates from the sea floor. Methane hydrates are an immense and unstable fossil fuel reserve that should be left untouched if we are to avoid the four-degree warmer future towards which we are currently headed.

Like the United States, China’s falling emissions have been aided by renewable energy expansions, but are more a result of economic forces that would have existed in the absence of government effort. China’s recent dramatic drop in coal use and cancellations of coal fired power plants owe far more to an economic slowdown and to adjustments for overcapacity in the power sector than to clean energy development. But of course other countries also bear some responsibility for China’s emissions. In talking about declining emissions in the United States from 2005, it would be remiss not to mention that between 2005 and 2016 the trade deficit for goods between the United States and China expanded $140 billion dollars.

Put another way, if the United States owned its emissions from the consumption increases that have fueled its last decade of economic growth, this would cancel out about half of the fourteen percent reductions that it has achieved since 2005.

If this is what climate leadership looks like, China has taken note. Its 2030 Paris target is a reduction of emissions intensity to GDP of 60 to 65 percent of 2005 levels. While China plans to grow its zero-energy generation (including nuclear) to meet this goal, the bulk of its gains will come from increasing personal consumption as a percentage of its GDP, and shifting of industrial production. Meanwhile, in 2016 alone, Chinese development banks invested $6.5 billion in coal infrastructure overseas, mostly in neighboring developing countries. In the future, emissions will be elsewhere.

While China and the United States have bent down their emissions curves, neither has a history of pursuing or a record of committing to strong climate policy. Environmental advocates often talk about the symbolism of Paris. Presumably, the leader’s symbolic actions allow for society to imagine new possibilities for the future. For Paris, the hope is that symbolism will, in time, translate into substance. This logic ignores the reality that when it comes to a two-degree future, time has run out. If China wishes to lead the world to a future that is only two degrees warmer, it should follow Germany’s example. The last three decades have expanded China’s emissions, but they have also expanded its wealth and power enough that it is in a position to make this choice, and probably even at a profit. It would be a pity if it chose to model its new climate leadership on the United States instead.

This article originally appeared on China US Focus.

Photo Credit: Will Clayton via Flickr

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Jarmo Mikkonen's picture
Jarmo Mikkonen on Jul 6, 2017

This contrasts sharply with Germany’s aggressive near-term targets for a 2020 target of a 40 percent reduction from 1990 emissions. Germany is able to aspire to this target because it made strong policy decisions years ago that have transformed the shape of its energy infrastructure, rather than letting its energy infrastructure transform the shape of its policy. Ten years ago, Germany put in place twenty-year feed-in tariffs at a price that would ensure profitability for renewable energy developers. The result is that wind and solar generation make up 45 percent of Germany’s installed capacity, and renewable energy makes up 30 percent of annual power generation.

79% of German primary energy consumption comes from fossil fuels. 81% of US primary energy consumption comes from fossil fuels. Because of the nuclear exit, Germany will not likely improve those numbers until after 2025. They will not likely achieve their 2020 target.

Thorkil Soee's picture
Thorkil Soee on Jul 6, 2017

China has seen the realities saying: ”All hands to the pumps”
Investing in the whole spectrum.
Hydro, Sun and Wind together with Nuclear, both traditional and thorium.
In the meantime Germany does whatever possible to destroy the climate under the pretext of saving it.

Sieren Ernst's picture
Sieren Ernst on Jul 6, 2017

Hi Jos,

Thanks for your comment. This is a part of my point that one cannot mark a country’s progress towards a clean energy system just by looking at progress towards arbitrary targets. A couple of things. First of all, primary energy includes transport, which was not dealt with in the scope of my article, but is indeed important. Globally, transport is lagging generation in terms of fuel switching to cleaner sources. That said, there is comparison no between rail infrastructure and dense development in Germany and the United States. The average Germany drives half the passenger miles per year of the average American. This, again, will allow for faster transitions in the country’s fundamental infrastructure. By 2025 sales market share of electric vehicles in the United States is predicted to be about 5%, compared to 30% in Europe. Further, I am aware that Germany’s use of renewable energy generation to replace another zero emissions generation source (nuclear) has slowed its rate of emissions reductions. They are still well ahead of the United States in terms of their targets, even though I do no think that targets are the correct measure. Germany’s overall installation of new sources of renewable energy (Just wind and solar, excluding hydro and biomass) far outstrips what has been done in the United States. While it will be politically more complicated for Germany to start supplanting coal generation with renewable than it has been to replace nuclear, even in given the difficulty of meeting a 2020 target’s of 40% reduction in 1990 levels, they are still well advanced of the United States, which uses an inflated baseline of 2005, and whose greenhouse gas emissions are still well above 1990 levels.

Jarmo Mikkonen's picture
Jarmo Mikkonen on Jul 6, 2017

I disagree on some points. First, 1990 baseline favours Germany because it includes all dirty industry of former East Germany that was shut down. Second, US population is growing, by comparison Germany’s has been stagnant since 1990 so comparisons are complicated. Third, it not just politically complicated to get rid of coal in Germany but also economically. Energiewende promotes wind and solar which have low capacity factors. Wind and solar grid priority mean lower CFs for all other sources such as coal and gas. German system will become less efficient and costly, coal as the cheapest fossil fuel is obviously in the front. Not to mention risks concerning German dependence on Russian gas which will grow to 50% of German supply with North Stream 2.

Darius Bentvels's picture
Darius Bentvels on Jul 6, 2017

They are not only far ahead of USA, but they are following a since 2000 stable agreed scenario of nuclear reduction and renewable increase, hence also fossil & CO2 reduction.
That stable scenario will bring them much farther ahead of USA, especially after 2022 when all nuclear is out.

Engineer- Poet's picture
Engineer- Poet on Jul 7, 2017

If China wishes to lead the world to two degrees, it should follow Germany’s example.

Follow Germany how?  Replace carbon-free nuclear energy with fluid-bed coal while it tries to expand wind and solar to cover the losses?  Have carbon emissions stubbornly stuck for several years in a row and unable to meet either 2020 or 2030 targets any more?

Why not follow France, Sweden and Ontario, which have all largely de-carbonized their electricity supplies and have per-capita emissions that their neighbors would envy… if they weren’t virtue-signalling about how “renewable” they are going to be?

The climate isn’t affected by “renewability”.  It’s affected by greenhouse gas emissions.

It would be a pity if it chose to model its new climate leadership on the United States instead.

Fortunately for the world, China is building more new nuclear power plants than any other country on earth.  The United States has ceded its leadership in this area as well.  That is a pity, and one of the top priorities of the Trump administration should be to get it back.

Rick Engebretson's picture
Rick Engebretson on Jul 7, 2017

The US has “ceded” nothing. We have reclaimed freedom to innovate on our terms with our resources.

If facts matter anymore, the “rich irony” is Paris is choking with pollution like Beijing and Delhi and often Los Angeles (during forest fire season). Instead of learning about the other half of the Carbon Cycle, the old bureaucratarians choose big expensive action plans for 2050 to replace current technology.

The “Green Revolution” begun half a century ago in the US must never be “ceded” to failed leadership.

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jul 7, 2017

Rick, if you stand outside a bus station in Minneapolis and check the air quality, you’ll probably get a worse reading than in Minnesota’s northwoods.

Similarly, if you check the air quality at the Eiffel Tower, you won’t get a representative reading for all of France. Because France’s per capita carbon emissions are the lowest in the EU, and one third of those of the U.S. It has nothing to do with the carbon cycle, it has to do with nuclear energy.

If the U.S. can be credited for any Green Revolution, it was ceded to France in the 1980s and in the last decade to China.

Sieren Ernst's picture
Sieren Ernst on Jul 7, 2017

Hi Jarmo,

It is certainly true Germany has benighted from ‘wall fall’ emission reductions. That said, all of Europe has had declining emissions since the beginning of the 1990s when the climate regulations started. The US’s emissions rose, then fell. It set its baseline so as not to into account its delayed action, thus the baseline is inflated. I absolutely agree that straightforward comparisons are very difficult to make and often misleading. It is true that Germany’s–indeed the EU’s–rate of population growth has been lower than the United States in the past two decades. That said, the EU’s 28’s total population is about 510 million people to the United State’s 320 million people. And yet while the United States’s population is about 2/3rds Europe’s population, the Europe’s GHG emissions are about 2/3rds those of United States. Put more simply, Europe’s per capita emissions are about half those of the United States–Emissions increases in the United States cannot be blamed on population growth. I do not see economic and political issues as being separate from each other, and the economics of coal do indeed make it an attractive political choice for many countries. Cutting cheap fossil fuels out of the energy supply, whether those fuels are coal or gas, has and will continue to be politically difficult for China, Germany, and the United States alike.

Sieren Ernst's picture
Sieren Ernst on Jul 7, 2017

I did not use France as an example because this is an article about using industrial policy to drive investment in low carbon technologies. France did not really need to do this in order to lower its emissions because it started with such a high base of nuclear energy. That said, France’s recent decisions to stop granting oil licenses in its domestic and overseas territories, most strikingly, the possibility of its putting into place a 100 Euro per ton carbon price, are certainly climate leadership demonstrated by few countries. Sweden, of course, is also a climate leader but it is a much smaller economy and therefore not an appropriate comparison.

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jul 7, 2017

Sieren, it will be both politically and physically more compicated for Germany to make further emissions reductions with renewables.

In the next decade the Energiewende will hit a wall where expense, land use, and intermittency make further reductions with renewables impossible. Gains of the last few years are used as benchmarks, as though everything will proceed in linear fashion for the next half century. And burning wood pellets made by chopping down old-growth forests (“biomass”) only serve to timeshift Germany’s emissions forward, when they’re most harmful.

In general, Americans have longer distances to drive, so electric transportation will increase in the U.S. as battery technology improves. If we can turn our nuclear industry around, recharging EVs at night with nuclear electricity could reduce transportation emissions to zero. As the overblown terror of Fukushima fades into memory, Germany will realize the value of its nuclear plants – the sooner, the better.

Rick Engebretson's picture
Rick Engebretson on Jul 7, 2017

Bob, I get an excellent view most every day of Minneapolis non-smog air quality via weather and traffic cameras shown on TV newscasts. Paris and the others look like a gloomy old movie by comparison, and want to ban petrol cars by 2050 as a result. If I were to “stand outside” the Minneapolis bus terminal I would probably get mugged or mistaken as a drug buyer.

If you had anything relevant to reply you might have corrected my comment by discussing Norman Borlaug’s work really began closer to a century ago. If you don’t understand “green” stick with your “nuke” arguments and good luck.

I certainly support rapidly shrinking petrol ICE cars everywhere. EVs and hybrids are nice, so why are Paris (etc.) so dirty?? Maybe they just want US money to buy US (and Japanese) cars?! What a deal!!

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jul 7, 2017

Sieren, as the country with the lowest per capita emissions in the EU, France is a perfect example of using industrial policy to drive investment in low carbon technologies. The French have proven, beyond doubt, that investment in nuclear energy can lower the carbon emissions of a modern, industrial-intensive economy.

Sweden’s economy is too small of to compare to Germany? What about Luxembourg, with the eighth-worst carbon emissions in the world – ahead of the United Arab Emirates?

Seems those associating only renewables with a low-carbon economy are forced to resort to cherry-picking, and meaningless comparisons of energy “capacity” to make their point.

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jul 7, 2017

Oh, that Green Revolution.

Rick, Norman Borlaug worked wonders for agriculture. How is that related to energy? How many of France’s vineyards would have to be plowed under for biofuels to power Paris – or would Parisians ride bicycles if they had more food to eat?

Missing your point.

Jarmo Mikkonen's picture
Jarmo Mikkonen on Jul 7, 2017

I did not use France as an example because this is an article about using industrial policy to drive investment in low carbon technologies

Sieren, you use Germany as an example of industrial policy to drive investment in low carbon technologies. Yet you ignore the fact that

Germany has rejected the one low carbon technology that has been most successful in reducing emissions in industrial countries

. France, Sweden, Finland have decarbonised their grids already to the degree where Germany wishes to be in 2050.

It would be more honest to admit that Germany is erasing one low carbon technology completely and putting anti-nuclear sentiments before pro-climate ones.

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 9, 2017

Sieren,

Please read the two URL articles to have the actual data regarding Germany and COP-21.

“This contrasts sharply with Germany’s aggressive near-term targets for a 2020 target of a 40 percent reduction from 1990 emissions.”

Germany’s CO2 emissions (from all sources) are about the same as in 2009. There is no way Germany, a big industrial nation, will meet its 2020 and 2030 targets. German households paid a MINIMUM of about 8 x 25 billion euro = 200 billion euro in subsidies during these 8 years to gain ZERO CO2 emission reduction. German boasting about COP-21 and criticizing the US is just empty rhetoric.
http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/world-land-area-needed-for-r...

2009 actual……907
2016 actual……906
2020 target……751…..40 below 1990
2030 target……563…..55 below 1990

Germany’s consumption of electricity from renewables has increased from 30.8%, 32.7%, and 35.1% in the first half of 2015, 2016, and 2017, respectively. But regarding the consumption of thermal energy for buildings, industry and commerce, and fuels for transportation, there has been so little change that the overall energy consumption from renewables has increased from 14.7%, 14.8% and 15.2% in the first half of 2015, 2016, and 2017, respectively, which means Germany will not meet its 18% goal in 2020.
http://www.dw.com/en/germanys-renewable-energy-use-rises-but-only-just/a...

The electricity sector contributes only about 45% of Germany’s total emissions. The 100% decarbonizing of the electricity sector, which is already about 45% decarbonized (if we add nuclear) would reduce total emissions by about another 25%. Yet Germany’s efforts to decrease emissions continue to concentrate on the electricity sector.

“COP-21 stated goal of limiting emissions global temperatures to between 1.5 and 2 degrees Celsius.”

COP-21 is a non-binding, CO2 emission reduction agreement, which aims to limit the world temperature to 2 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial level during the 1861 – 1880 period in 2100. By 2015, the increase was about 1.0 C. That leaves just 1.0 C to go, if a 2 C increase is the limit, or 0.5 C, if a 1.5 C increase is the limit. This may appear minor, but it is not, because present trends point to much higher temperature increases.

The world CO2eq emissions, all sources, were about 52.7 billion metric ton in 2014 and are on a trajectory to become about 65 billion Mt in 2030.

The UN Environment Program, UNEP, is optimistic. It estimates the emissions would be about 60 billion Mt in 2030, if all policies and pledges, made prior to COP-21, were fully implemented. If so, the increase would be about 3.7 C above pre-industrial in 2100 without COP-21, about 3.5 C with COP-21.

MIT and Lomberg, a Danish professor, base their analyses on 65 billion Mt, because past COP experience shows, all policies and pledges likely will not be fully implemented. They predict an increase of about 4.3 C above pre-industrial in 2100 without COP-21, about 4.1 C with COP-21.

The below summary is based on UNEP estimates:

1) With full implementation of policies and pledges prior to COP-21, the increase would be about 3.7 C in 2100.
2) With full implementation of COP-21 pledges by 2030, the increase would be about 3.5 C in 2100.
3) With additional CO2eq reduction by 2030 (gap no. 1), the increase would be about 2 C in 2100.
4) With even more CO2eq reduction by 2030 (gap no. 2), the increase would be about 1.5 C in 2100.
http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/cop-21-world-renewable-energ...

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 9, 2017

Sieren,

The world’s fossil fuel consumption has been about 78% of all primary energy* for the past 10 years, despite several trillion dollars of investments in renewable electricity systems.
http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/cop-21-world-renewable-energ...

* The energy from wells, mines, forests, etc., is called source energy, which requires exploration, extraction, processing and transport to provide a proper supply of primary energy to power plants, buildings, industry, commerce, and transportation, etc.

Current coal consumption is about 8000 million metric ton per year. China and India use about 60% of that IN AN INEFFICIENT AND DIRTY MANNER. Their older plants have low efficiencies (high CO2/kWh), and have low efficiency pollution control systems (high pollution/kWh).

See URL and table for future additions of China and India coal plants, despite their COP-21 “pledges”.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamestaylor/2017/07/07/global-coal-power-ke... – 7fdad4fa5309

Mark Heslep's picture
Mark Heslep on Jul 10, 2017

Surely low carbon solutions should fundamentally focus on what is proven to dramatically lower carbon emissions and not on perceptions of motivation. Accordingly, I save the term ‘striking’ for France’s 10% share of fossil fuel in electric generation, obtained from a switch decades ago from heavy oil-fired power over 12 years, resulting in today’s ~50 gCO2/kWh, ten times lower than Germany.

To do otherwise is apt to lead to mistaking decarbonization poses in lieu of actual decarbonization.

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 10, 2017

Sieren,
“It is true that Germany’s–indeed the EU’s–rate of population growth has been lower than the United States in the past two decades.”

The US has had much faster economic growth AND population growth than the EU-27.

This has led to more energy use, but the energy use per $ of GDP,
and per capita has decreased.

The US is much more spread out than Europe, so the US should be compared with similar spread out countries, such as Canada, Norway, etc., regarding energy use per capita, and not with densely populated Japan, etc., where people live on top of each other.

The world uses 8000 MILLION metric ton of coal per year and China and India PLAN to increase coal use after COP-21, as noted in my above comment.

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 10, 2017

Bob,

Paris is in a bowl and sinking, because the aquifer is being used up.

Pollution is horrible on some days, similar to Las Vegas, Mexico City, etc.

Driving is allowed on odd days for some people and on even days for others.

London has the same problem.

Mankind was never meant to live in big metropolitan areas.

This is only necessary, because soon there will be 10 billion of us and there will be whole lot less other flora and fauna, as we ravish the earth like a hordes of locusts.

http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/world-land-area-needed-for-r...

Darius Bentvels's picture
Darius Bentvels on Jul 10, 2017

First half of 2017 German renewable produced not 35.1% of all electricity, but 37.6%.
According to the Fraunhofer report site.

So they are progressing faster than ever towards 100% renewable!

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Jul 10, 2017

Mankind was never meant to live in big metropolitan areas.

Willem, that’s one way to look at it. Another is that a communal sharing of labor and resources has enabled humankind to flourish through efficiencies of scale, a phenomenon which existed long before it had a name.

Though 18-million-member communities are victims of an entirely different set of local problems than 1800-member ones, on a global scale we all benefit from those same efficiencies today. You say “pollution is horrible on some days” – compared to what? What would be the carbon imprint of the same 18 million people living on their own farms and burning their own coal for energy?

The only problem with pollution in big metropolitan areas is that waste remediation has not kept up with waste production. There’s no reason remediation can’t be handled with efficiencies of scale, but the problem isn’t bad enough yet. Things have to get really, really bad before the free-marketers among us will consider anything that reeks of socialism, anything that will force them to clean up after themselves.

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 10, 2017

Bestvels,

My data is about END consumption, yours is about production.

They are not comparable.

Darius Bentvels's picture
Darius Bentvels on Jul 10, 2017

Little difference between the electricity end consumption mix and production mix. The only difference can be because of differences in the ~1% transmission losses.

PV-solar will have less losses than fossiel & nuclear, as it is produced near end consumers (especially rooftop), wind slightly more as it often has to be transported to the south.

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 12, 2017

Bentvels,
German gross generation was 648 TWh in 2016, electricity arriving at user meters was 530 TWh

Darius Bentvels's picture
Darius Bentvels on Jul 12, 2017

2016 production was indeed 648TWh.
Export-import was 54TWh (8% of production)
German consumption was 595TWh in 2016.
(figures from AGEB)

Your statement implies that 18% of the generated electricity is lost somewhere, which I don’t believe.
Please show your source?
So we can solve the issue.
Thanks already.

Willem Post's picture
Willem Post on Jul 13, 2017

Bentvels,
Net consumption was 526, arriving at meters.
595, gross consumption – 526, net consumption = 69 losses

Darius Bentvels's picture
Darius Bentvels on Jul 14, 2017

Willem,
Thanks for the link to the nice CEW site which uses a.o. the AGEB data (which I also use) to construct its nice graphics.

I conclude that you added the consumption of the different sectors as stated in graph 4/11, resulting in 526TWh for the consumption. Which would indicate a loss of 13%, being abnormal high. Less than 2% is normal here.

However:
– the sectors in the graph do not represent all sectors, E.g. no govt.
– the sector data is gathered by asking consumers about their consumption, which is an unreliable method.

So your consumption total of 526TWh is significant less than reality. Sorry, but the AGEB figure of 594TWh for the consumption is far more accurate.

Darius Bentvels's picture
Darius Bentvels on Jul 15, 2017

The AGEB consumption figure is 594.7TWh, so it should be 595TWh. The figure you state as gross consumption.

Sorry for the rounding off slip.

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