Companies in China are Reducing Carbon Emissions Essay

Companies in China are Reducing Carbon Emissions Essay

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1. Background

Climate change is one of the most important international issues and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) sets an overall framework for intergovernmental efforts to tackle the challenges posed by climate change (Guidance on how to measure and report your greenhouse gas emissions, 2009).With the increasing awareness of the severity of climate change, the reduction of CO2 emissions has become a predominant topic. According to International Energy Agency (2013), China emitted 7954.55 million tons of CO2 which occupied 24% of total global CO2 emissions in 2011.

The Kyoto Protocol is a global agreement linked to the UNFCCC which sets targets for countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Although China have ratified the Kyoto protocol, Developing countries such as China and India do not need to present any emissions targets. However, developed countries in G20 which are directly affected by global warming, pressure China to follow the rules and set a clear goal for greenhouse gas emission. Chinese government has set the ambitious target of increasing the share of hydropower, wind power, solar power and other renewables to 15% by 2020 to replace the fossil fuels in order to reduce carbon emission (Jiahua and Xianli). Moreover, to deal with the rising problem regarding climate change ,the State Council announced that China is going to reduce the intensity of carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP in 2020 by 40 to 45 percent compared with the level of 2005 (Xinhua News, 2009).

Although Ch...

... middle of paper ...

...ny indicators index were disclosed in corporate voluntary reports through the GRI3.1 or GRI3.0. The presence of words and concepts in carbon-related indicator were record as (1) while the absence or no disclosure of certain indicator were record as (0). The disclosure of carbon footprint or initiatives assumed to reflect the activities adopted by the company. The GRI guidelines provide clear indicators for energy and carbon footprint, which make it easy and accurate to assess whether the companies make effort to disclose carbon footprint and take action to achieve initiatives for carbon reductions among 20 Chinese listed companies. More indicators companies disclosed means that companies take more action to publish more specific carbon consumption or initiatives of carbon reductions to the public. It can reduce the legitimacy gap and satisfy social expectations.

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