The Electric Utilities Program is interested in efforts to:
- Promote the adoption of increasingly stringent generation efficiency and GHG emissions standards in the power sector;
- Establish the policies and incentives, and build the capacity needed, to enable large-scale demand-side energy efficiency program implementation; and
- Promote the development and adoption of policies, incentives and regulatory requirements for coal-alternative cleaner resources and technologies, including gas and CCS.
The China Electric Utilities Program aims to shift the country’s power sector away from fossil-fuel-based electricity generation and toward cost-effective energy efficiency and renewable energy.
The power sector, responsible for half of China’s coal consumption, is the country’s largest greenhouse gas emitter. Although the rate of increase of electricity consumption has slowed down in recent years, projections indicate significant future demand growth, particularly for coal-fired power generation, which accounts for some 75 percent of generation at present. This, coupled with rapid growth in demand, seriously harms China’s environment and public health, and undermines efforts to reduce global warming emissions. The Chinese government recognizes the coming crisis and is introducing robust policies to improve efficiency and encourage renewable energy development.
The Electric Utilities Program promotes the development and adoption of policies and regulatory requirements that reduce overall power sector greenhouse gas emissions through optimizing power system operation, and the deployment of coal-alternative sources and technologies that are cleaner and more efficient, including gas and distributed generation. We focus on reform measures that require utilities to invest in demand-side management, as well as policies that provide pricing and financial incentives to make it profitable. We support an ongoing project to develop “Energy Efficiency Power Plants”—aggregated demand-side, end-use energy efficiency projects that offset electricity demand by reducing the need for new power plants. Finally, we strive to reduce coal consumption and accelerate the deployment of carbon capture and sequestration technologies.