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Pathway toward carbon-neutral electrical systems in China by mid-century with negative CO2 abatement costs informed by high-resolution modeling
Chen, X.; Liu, Y.; Wang, Q.; Lv, J.; Wen, J.; Chen, X.; Kang, C.; Cheng, S.; McElroy, M.B. (2021). Pathway toward carbon-neutral electrical systems in China by mid-century with negative CO2 abatement costs informed by high-resolution modeling. Joule 5(10): 2715-2741. https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.joule.2021.10.006
In: Joule. Cell Press: Cambridge. e-ISSN 2542-4351, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Keyword
    Marine/Coastal
Author keywords
    carbon neutrality, decarbonization pathway, power system planning, flexibility, electric vehicles, power-to-gas, storage, transmission expansion

Authors  Top 
  • Chen, X.
  • Liu, Y.
  • Wang, Q.
  • Lv, J.
  • Wen, J.
  • Chen, X.
  • Kang, C.
  • Cheng, S.
  • McElroy, M.B.

Abstract
    China, the largest global CO2 emitter, recently announced ambitious targets for carbon neutrality by 2060. Its technical and economic feasibility is unclear given severe renewable integration barriers. Here, we developed a cross-sector, high-resolution assessment model to quantify optimal energy structures on provincial bases for different years. Hourly power system simulations for all provinces for a full year are incorporated on the basis of comprehensive grid data to quantify the renewable balancing costs. Results indicate that the conventional strategy of employing local wind, solar, and storage to realize 80% renewable penetration by 2050 would incur a formidable decarbonization cost of $27/ton despite lower levelized costs for renewables. Coordinated deployment of renewables, ultra-high-voltage transmissions, storages, Power-to-gas and slow-charging electric vehicles can reduce this carbon abatement cost to as low as $−25/ton. Were remaining emissions removed by carbon capture and sequestration technologies, achieving carbon neutrality could be not only feasible but also cost-competitive post 2050.

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