The Chinese government is lowering its subsidies for renewable energy, after researchers found that they were too high relative to the rapidly dropping global price of wind and solar technologies.
High state subsidies have helped speed the growth of the renewable energy sector in China, but they now threaten the sustainability of the government’s funding policy for this sector. This is particularly true given the recent reduction in the cost of solar and wind technologies globally. Together, these factors are making the supply side of the sector extremely profitable in China, but are depleting state funds that are earmarked for this much-needed growth.
A plan to reduce automobile traffic in Beijing was in the hands of the city’s mayor in late 2013. EfD China played a major role in figuring out what strategies would – and would not – be likely to reduce the pollution and congestion that Beijing residents have been facing as a result of economic growth.
“Key messages resulting from the multi-year study include redistributing management responsibility between central and local governments, and allowing localized decision on reforming state forest enterprises,” says Jintao Xu.
Beijing is the world´s most congested city as measured by average vehicle speed. It is also one of the most air polluted cities, with a substantial part of the emissions coming from vehicles. To find effective policy instruments to address these serious urban challenges, Environment for Development in China/the Environmental Economics Program in China (EEPC) and Beijing Transportation Research Center are collaborating in a research program.
For ten years he has pointed to forests as a major asset for sustainable development in China. Finally and just in time for the ongoing UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, China’s national leaders are as convinced as professor Jintao Xu: Forests have a unique potential to contribute to sustainable economic development and a reduction of China's massive carbon emissions.
”It has been widely acknowledged that lack of appropriate mechanisms and incentives in the state forest sector, as well as lack of secure forest tenure for farmers in the collective forest sector, underpin severe poverty in forested areas and unsatisfactory performance of forest resource conservation", says Professor Jintao Xu, the coordinator of EfD in China and one of China’s most prominent experts in forestry economics.
This is an example of how EfD research can influence policy, more specifically Forest tenure reform in China.