|Help | Sitemap | Archive | Advanced Search|
|Voice of Readers|
|China At a Glance|
|Constitution of the PRC|
|CPC and State Organs|
|Chinese President Jiang Zemin|
|White Papers of Chinese Government|
|Selected Works of Deng Xiaoping|
|English Websites in China|
|Sunday, October 21, 2001, updated at 11:39(GMT+8)|
Question on Diversifying Energy RaisedPanellists attending a session on energy during APEC CEO Summit 2001 agreed that reduced dependence on fossil fuels would not affect their status as the major energy resources for the foreseeable future.
But they presented different views on what should be the key energy substitute in coming decades. "Renewable resources will partially replace fossil fuels and lessen our dependence on them. But fossil fuels will remain the major energy resources," said Zhang Guobao, Chinese vice-minister of State Development Planning Commission.
Charles Williamson, CEO of Unocal Corporation, also believed the global economy would rely on fossil fuels for many years to come.
"At some point in the 21st century, the global economy will shift away from fossil fuels - particularly crude oil and coal - as its primary energy source," he said. "The reality, however, is that this shift is still several decades away."
According to the latest projections published by the US Energy Information Agency, worldwide consumption of crude oil will increase from the current level of 75 million barrels per day to 120 million barrels per day by 2020. Over the same period, the total worldwide consumption of coal is expected to increase from the current level of 4.7 billion tons to 6.4 billion tons per year.
Taken together, crude oil and coal will still provide nearly 60 per cent of world energy consumption in 2020.
Considering the depletion of fossil fuel one day in the future and the accompanying environmental damages caused by its utilization, the panellists presented different solutions in diversifying the energy structure.
Zhang Guobao suggested environment-friendly renewable resources, such as solar, tidal, hydra-electrical and wind powers.
"The future for renewable resources is very promising and there will be great business opportunities. Governments should support their development vigorously," he noted.
Unocal's CEO believed natural gas has tremendous potential to help the APEC economies meet the growing demand for energy and the benefits will go beyond economic interests.
"Its consumption provides significant environmental benefits including associated health benefits over the use of coal and crude oil," said Williamson.
"Cross-border development projects involving this resource can create vital economic ties between APEC nations, promoting economic and political stability," he added. On the same issue, Valentine Ivanov, Russia's first deputy minister of the Ministry of Atomic Energy, said Russia's choice is to develop nuclear power based on fast reactors.
In This Section
|Copyright by People's Daily Online, all rights reserved||| Mirror in U.S. | Mirror in Japan | Mirror in Edu-Net | Mirror in Tech-Net ||