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Mitigating Climate Change Through Investments in Fossil Fuel Technologies

A Synthesis Report Based on National Case Studies from Afghanistan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan

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This report is the principal written deliverable of the project "Mitigating climate change through attracting foreign direct investment in advanced fossil fuel technologies", financed from the United Nations Development Account (UNDA). The project, implemented in 2010-2012, covered nine countries: Afghanistan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. The report takes into account findings of the national baseline studies, drafted for each of the nine countries between November 2011 and August 2012. The report summarizes and interprets the experiences, policies, and plans for the future of each country in developing a thermal electricity sector using advanced technologies that reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and exploit the countries’ fossil fuel resources.

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Fossil fuels in electricity generation

Historically, electricity generating plants were built where fossil fuels were readily available, reliably delivered, cheap and easy to handle. This has over time usually meant coal, although oil was sometimes used (as in the Persian Gulf states), and latterly natural gas in countries having abundant gas reserves. An important, but often unstated criterion in both developed and developing countries was security of energy supply: it is deemed better to rely on domestic resources of fuel for electricity than to use interruptible sources which have to be imported. It has only been in the past three decades that the need to control and reduce pollution and then CO2 emissions has become an important criterion in building electricity generation plants.

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