Click through the interactive infographic to see how China, the world’s largest nation and second-largest economy, races to meet rising demand for energy.
China is the world’s largest energy producer and consumer. The nation’s go-to energy source is coal, as China mines and processes more than 3 billion metric tons of coal annually to fuel its expanding economy. But the coal sector is also the nation’s second-largest industrial consumer of water, so a finite water supply will likely limit the coal industry’s growth.
While China finances and manages the world’s largest alternative energy programs — such as wind, solar, nuclear, and hydropower — China’s energy demand is rising so fast that, without a breakthrough in supply or efficiency, coal will still fuel 70 percent of the nation’s energy portfolio in the next decade. Additionally, China is setting ambitious production targets for deep shale gas development and exploring marginal development in liquid natural gas and coal-seam gas sources.
Click the image below to launch an interactive Google Fusion Tables map that shows energy production data by province from 1997 to 2010, illustrating the historical shift in sources of and outputs for energy production across the country. (Data gathered from the China Statistical Yearbook of China’s National Bureau of Statistics.)
This map was created by Samuel Kosinski, a data intern for Circle of Blue. Contributors include Aubrey Ann Parker and Jordan B. Bates of Circle of Blue, with assistance from Jennifer Turner of the Wilson Center’s China Environment Forum.
Choke Point: China is an on-going Circle of Blue series, produced in partnership with the Wilson Center’s China Environment Forum. Through frontline reporting, the project finds new and powerful evidence of a ruinous confrontation between water, food, and energy that is visible across China and is virtually certain to grow more dire over the next decade. Choke Point: China is part of Global Choke Point, which is uncovering new data and strategic narratives about water, food, and energy in the world’s most vulnerable regions.
Circle of Blue provides relevant, reliable, and actionable on-the-ground information about the world’s resource crises.