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Potential for reducing global carbon emissions from electricity production—A benchmarking analysis

Ang, B.W., Zhou, P., Tay, L.P.
Energy policy 2011 v.39 no.5 pp. 2482-2489
carbon, carbon dioxide, coal, electricity, greenhouse gas emissions, oils, China, India, Russia, United States
We present five performance indicators for electricity generation for 129 countries using the 2005 data. These indicators, measured at the national level, are the aggregate CO₂ intensity of electricity production, the efficiencies of coal, oil and gas generation and the share of electricity produced from non-fossil fuels. We conduct a study on the potential for reducing global energy-related CO₂ emissions from electricity production through simple benchmarking. This is performed based on the last four performance indicators and the construction of a cumulative curve for each of these indicators. It is found that global CO₂ emissions from electricity production would be reduced by 19% if all these indicators are benchmarked at the 50th percentile. Not surprisingly, the emission reduction potential measured in absolute terms is the highest for large countries such as China, India, Russia and the United States. When the potential is expressed as a percentage of a country's own emissions, few of these countries appear in the top-five list.