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Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

China's recently announced plan to reach carbon neutrality by 2060 would require investments of over $5 trillion, per new analysis from the consultancy Wood Mackenzie.

Why it matters: The estimate released Thursday shows how analysts are beginning to grapple with how China, by far the world's largest carbon emitter, might take steps to implement aspects of its ambitious but still-vague pledge.

  • "The hefty bill is the total sum required for additional power generation capacity to accommodate the growth in electrification by 2050," the consultancy said.

What they're saying: “It is definitely a colossal task for a country using 90% hydrocarbons in its energy mix and annually producing more than 10 billion tonnes of [carbon dioxide-equivalent], and in addition, accounting for 28% of global total emissions," said Prakash Sharma, a senior Woodmac analyst, in a statement.

The big picture: The scale of transformation needed is simply immense.

  • For instance, Woodmac estimates that China's wind, solar and storage capacity would have to increase elevenfold to 5,040 gigawatts (GW) by 2050 compared to 2020 levels.
  • "Total new stock of electric vehicles would hit 325 million units by 2050, compared to 4 million units today."

Go deeper: China's 2060 carbon neutral goal bill could hit over $5 trillion (Reuters)

Go deeper

Jan 15, 2021 - World

Chinese annual rare earth exports fall to 5-year low

A front loader shifting soil containing rare earth minerals in a port in Lianyungang, China, in September 2010. Photo: STR/AFP via Getty Images

China exported around 35,400 tons of rare earth minerals and metals in 2020 — a roughly 23% drop from 2019's total, according to data from China's customs authority and records maintained by Reuters.

Why it matters: It's the lowest recoded amount since 2015 for the world's leading miner, processor and exporter of the materials, which are crucial in the manufacturing of commercial electronics, renewable energy development and military equipment.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

FTX CEO predicts more U.S. crypto flight

Photo: "Axios on HBO"

FTX doesn't look much like a company valued at $25 billion. Its new headquarters, located in a sleepy part of The Bahamas, is so nondescript as to not even have a sign. But it does expect to soon have neighbors.

Driving the news: Founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried tells "Axios on HBO" to expect "more and more crypto flight from the states" if the U.S. doesn't soon create a regulatory regime for cryptocurrencies.

Developed countries reveal $100 billion climate finance plan ahead of COP26

Alok Sharma, head of the UN Climate Summit in Glasgow, speaks in Paris on Oct. 12. ( Li Yang/China News Service via Getty Images)

After 12 years of fits and starts, industrialized nations on Monday put forward a detailed plan to provide at least $100 billion annually in climate aid to developing countries starting by 2023.

Why it matters: The plan, presented by representatives of Canada and Germany, is aimed at defusing one of the biggest sources of tension at COP26, which is the failure of industrialized nations to follow through on their financial commitments.