Elon Musk, the world’s richest man and an entrepreneur most typically associated with innovation for his participation in everything from SpaceX’s trip to Mars to Tesla electric cars, has supported China’s technical advantage in renewable energy and electric vehicles (EVs). “Few appear to realize that China is dominating the globe in renewable energy production and electric cars,” he said on Monday on Twitter and China’s Weibo social media site, which is similar to Twitter.
“This is just a truth, regardless of what you think about China.” Musk did not elaborate, but analysts said the remark – made at a time when the US and China are locked in a technology war – could be interpreted as a warning to US policymakers that they must tread carefully to ensure China continues to cooperate on addressing the long-term global issue of climate change.
According to Lucas Zhang Liutong, head of the Hong Kong-based consultancy WaterRock Energy Economics, “with China’s current competence and continuous investment in the value-chain of clean energy technology development, it is far more productive for the US and China to cooperate together.” “Given China’s existing capability and continued investment in the value-chain of clean energy technology development,” “If elements of the clean energy supply chain, such battery, and smart grid equipment, come under bifurcation pressures like those observed in 5G [wireless technology], then equipment prices will grow, and the rate of decarbonization in many poor nations may slow down even more,” he said. “Battery and smart grid equipment are two examples.”
China is the world’s top carbon dioxide emitter, accounting for 30 percent of global emissions last year. Greenhouse gas is widely acknowledged as the primary cause of global warming. However, although China is the world’s greatest user of coal, the most carbon-intensive fuel, it is also the world’s largest producer of hydro, wind, and solar energy.
According to the China Passenger Car Association, it is also the world’s biggest market for cars powered by electric batteries and hydrogen fuel cells, with about three million units sold last year. According to the Brussels-based industry organization SolarPower Europe, China’s installed solar producing capacity accounted for a third of the worldwide total by the end of last year.
According to figures from the Worldwide Wind Energy Council (GWEC), China’s fleet of wind farms accounted for 39% of global installed capacity by the end of last year. In addition, China accounted for 58% of worldwide wind turbine production capacity, followed by Europe (18.5%), the United States (10%), and India (8.5%).
At the same time, according to GWEC’s annual industry report from April, “China controls the processing of many of the minerals and rare earth elements necessary to achieve the energy shift.” It claims to hold 40% of worldwide copper refining capacity, 35% of nickel refining capacity, and 87% of rare earth refining capacity. These materials were used in the production of wind turbines and other products.
The current trade war between the United States and China, as well as rising raw material and commodity costs, have influenced the pricing and procurement of wind turbine components throughout the world, according to GWEC.
“Sustainable energy production from sun and wind is making fantastic progress,” Musk, a staunch proponent of clean energy and the biggest shareholder of Tesla, which develops electric vehicles, solar energy generating, and energy storage devices, stated two months ago in a post on Weibo.
Tesla buys solar system components from a variety of vendors and installs rooftop solar systems in homes and businesses around the United States. It exclusively sells to the residential market in other countries.
Over 1 million electric vehicles and 345-megawatt solar energy systems were deployed in the United States last year. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association in Washington, one megawatt of solar electricity can power about 270 households in California. Tesla’s entire income of $53.8 billion in 2021 came from energy production and storage, with the remainder coming from electric vehicles.
Source: South China Morning Post