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posted on 28 June 2015

China's Growing Energy Demand: Implications For The United States

by Congressional Budget Office

In 2010, China surpassed the United States to become the world's largest energy user. China consumed more coal and renewable energy but less oil, natural gas, and nuclear power. By 2013, China consumed 25 percent more energy than the United States, including burning more than three times as much coal, and the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects that by 2040 China will consume more than twice as much energy as the United States.

That growth and China's energy policies affect U.S. households and businesses in at least three ways:

  • Increasing the level and possibly the volatility of some energy prices,
  • Reducing the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing firms in relation to Chinese firms while benefiting U.S. consumers who pay lower prices because of Chinese subsidies for manufacturing, and
  • Increasing greenhouse gas emissions.

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