Modern large thermal power plant in Dezhou City Shandong Province, China. Image: Chuyu, Bigstock
Following rapid expansion over the last two decades, China’s coal power fleet has reached a capacity of around 940 GW, representing over 12% of global CO2 emissions, and is expected to grow to 1100 GW in 2020. With little prospect of early plant closures in China’s fast-growing economy, it will be essential to retrofit carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) to a significant proportion of this young fleet if ambitious global climate goals are to be reached. CCUS has been internationally recognised as an essential technology for decarbonisation at least cost to society, contributing 14% of CO2 emissions reductions in the International Energy Agency’s ‘two degree scenario’ (2DS); 16% of this is associated with CCUS fitted on up to 180 GW of Chinese coal capacity.