Challenges faced by state-owned companies in achieving China’s carbon neutrality goal

China has said that before 2030, she will realize her carbon emissions peak and reach carbon neutrality by 2060. Such goals are so significant to the entire world but are exacting more pressure on China’s companies, especially those owned by the state, which plays a vital role in the country’s functioning yet emitting greenhouse gases. For these state-owned companies to achieve carbon reduction goals and combat air pollution, they have to take great measures such as technological advancement with fewer greenhouse gasses production, speeding off energy transition, and taking part in social responsibility like tree planting.

Speaking to Global Times, observers said that many state-owned entities are learning how to set goals and implement them. But despite the challenges, China’s state-owned enterprises have all it takes to cut down emissions. For instance, these companies can easily afford and access technical progress and are more responsive to the nation’s policies. As of now, many entities have already taken early steps and are leading as role models.

Representatives from some of these state companies have said that achieving emission reduction goals and environmental concerns is now part and parcel of their daily routine. In the Five-Year Plan, many entities are expected to emphasize and expand their green development.

Last year December, China announced more dedications towards the 2030 mission. Some of these commitments include decreasing carbon dioxide emissions by more than 65% per unit of GDP from the 2005 level, adding forest stock volume by over 6 billion cubic meters from the 2005 level, increasing renewable energy consumption share to 25%, and increasing its wind and solar capacity to more than 1.2 billion kilowatts.

More pressure

In China, most government companies are the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions despite being the livelihoods of many people and the national economy’s lifeblood. For example, in 2019, China’s steel industry’s total carbon emissions alone were over 60% of the global steel industry. This was 15% of China’s total carbon emissions, with China’s highest carbon emissions coming from the manufacturing industry.

A report from the World Steel Association showed that in 2019, in the top ten global steel companies, China occupied six seats, of which four were owned by the state. The four state-owned entities’ output stood at 74.4% of the total country’s output. This means that China’s state-owned companies are the ones to encounter more pressure as far as carbon emissions reduction and energy conservation are concerned.

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