China Daily Life - Construction

The US and China agreed to jointly cut carbon emissions in order to combat climate change, a historic pact that has many excited and many outraged. But China’s commitment to cap greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 means the country will need to build out power generation infrastructure in unprecedented ways. “That means building even more nuclear power plants, wind farms, hydro-electric dams and even start employing more solar power, of which the country installed 12 gigawatts-worth in 2013. In fact, in 2013, more new clean energy sources were added to the grid in China than fossil fuel-fired power—for the first time ever. China has added several hundred gigawatts-worth of such clean energy—the Three Gorges Dam alone pumps out 22 GW— but hopes to add as much as 1,000 gigawatts of these low-carbon emitting sources by 2030. That would constitute 20 percent of its energy—and roughly the total amount of all electricity produced in the U.S. or all the coal-fired power plants China has built in the last few decades. It’s also double what the Chinese have committed to achieve by 2015 in their current Five-Year Plan.” [Scientific American]

Dow Chemical is selling assets to streamline operations and focus on core competencies, executives announced yesterday. The company appears bullish on US operations that rely on historically cheap natural gas feedstock. “Calling Freeport the “epicenter” of the nation’s chemical production, Liveris said the company remains committed to the plant there, pointing to the array of projects under construction, including a new ethylene cracker and new propane dehydrogenation unit to capitalize on low-cost gas, as well as two new plastics plants. Dow is also building a new campus called the Texas Innovation Center in nearby Lake Jackson, which will house research and development operations.” [Fuel Fix]

If oil prices remain at current levels through next year, companies developing shale resources could decrease their capital spending by 10% the IEA said in its latest World Energy Outlook. “If prices remain at these lows, this may result in a decline in U.S. upstream capital expenditures by 10 percent in 2015, which will have implication for future production growth,” Birol said. [Rigzone]