The Chinese government has officially adopted the much-awaited 13th Five-Year Plan, the national blueprint that outlines the policy framework, priorities, and economic and social development goals for the 2016-2020 period.
It is the first Five-Year Plan drafted since China’s economy entered what experts call the “new normal,” a phase of moderate growth based more on domestic consumption than on the previous dominance of exports.
The new plan sets an average annual growth rate of national GDP between 6.5 and 7 percent and includes measures to face the country’s challenges, such as poverty eradication and increasing urbanization.
The plan features 13 binding targets, of which 10 relate to the environment, sustainable development and natural resources. The most relevant targets concerning climate and energy for 2020 include:
- reduction of energy intensity (energy consumed per unit of GDP) by 15 percent compared with 2015 levels; reduction of carbon intensity (the amount of greenhouse gases emitted per unit of GDP) by 18 percent compared with 2015;
- absolute limit for energy consumption of 5 billion tons of standard coal equivalent (the current level is 4.3 billion tons);
- 15 percent share of non-fossil energy in primary energy consumption.
According to the World Resources Institute, the new Five-Year Plan sets China on a path to a 48 percent reduction in carbon intensity levels by 2020 compared to 2005 levels, thus exceeding the original target of a 40-45 percent reduction by that year announced in 2009 before the Copenhagen climate summit.
Continue to read and discover all the news featuring on the latest issue of International Climate Policy Magazine (N.40), the ICCG bi-monthly magazine aimed at providing a clear analysis of the worldwide evolution of both international and domestic climate and energy policies, as well as the carbon market.