The CCP Caused an Energy Shortage That Is Disrupting the Global Supply Chain


Monday, October 18, 2021

In recent weeks, reports have emerged indicating that as many as twenty Chinese provinces are experiencing an energy crisis. Many of the provinces facing these power rationing orders are in Northeast China. Residents of many northeastern provinces have shared their concerns and frustrations regarding the power outages as the weather continues to get colder and are asking for help from the government on social media in hopes that residential energy will be restored. 

Residents’ energy supply is being rationed, and in some cases cut off entirely. Factories are also facing significant problems because of China’s energy cuts. Official figures reveal that factory activity this September was at its lowest since February 2020 at the initial height of the coronavirus lockdowns.

More than half of China’s energy consumption is fueled by coal. Coal is the main reason China is facing this energy crisis. Last year, China and Australia got into a dispute that resulted in a ban on the importation of Australian coal to China. This was a significant move for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) because Australia was their main source of coal imports. With more than half of China’s energy consumption being fueled by coal, banning the importation of Australian coal was a devastating blow to China’s energy sector.

But the shortage of coal isn’t the only factor in this energy crisis. The CCP’s ambitious goals of being carbon neutral by the year 2060 and reaching a peak in coal consumption by the year 2030 are contributing to the crisis. To achieve these goals the CCP has imposed limits on energy consumption across China. But the surge in demand for goods following the COVID-19 pandemic has caused factories in China to use more energy than previously expected. So in response to the energy consumption limits, many factories have stopped or slowed their energy use to avoid exceeding the limits imposed by the CCP to promote efficiency.

These energy shortages are a cause for grave concern ahead of the upcoming holiday season. Many supply chains are reliant on the manufacturing of goods in China. Major firms like Apple and Tesla have suspended production in many Chinese factories to comply with the energy rationing measures. The halting of manufacturing in semiconductor factories is a significant worry for many firms based in the US, as there is an ongoing chip shortage globally. A significant decrease in the production of semiconductors will only further impact the ongoing chip shortage among other supply chain issues. 

While this crisis is alarming and will impact the cost of consumer goods in the US, it is important to look at the CCP’s ambitions as they rise as a global power. China has clear plans to reduce and eliminate carbon emissions which the entire world will benefit from. But these energy consumption limitations will severely hurt or eliminate many weaker and smaller factories in China’s low-end industries which produce goods that are exported. Eliminating these factories will help the CCP in achieving its ‘Made in China 2025’ plan. This is a plan outlined by the party to reshape China’s economy so that it can out-compete the United States in sectors of the economy where America remains dominant. Some of these sectors include telecoms and the race for 5G, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and data collection. The plan also focuses on mid to high-end manufacturing in industries such as the production of semiconductors and computer chips. 

The ongoing supply chain issues that the world is experiencing due to China’s energy crisis should make us consider bringing strategic manufacturing back to the US. The prices of everyday goods will only continue to rise if the United States does not push for further diversification on manufacturing sources for low-end goods. The United States also needs to continue to develop and specialize in economic sectors like AI, data collection, and the telecommunications race for the 5G rollout. China is a strategic competitor with ambitious goals for the year 2025, and it is only right that the United States continues to reshape its focus back to domestic production and economic specialization.  

Tim Puglisi is a UMass student studying political science and managerial economics. He is currently involved with the CRNC and hopes to build the conservative movement in Massachusetts and on college campuses.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.

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About Timothy Puglisi

Tim Puglisi is a UMass student studying political science and managerial economics. He is currently involved with the CRNC and hopes to build the conservative movement in Massachusetts and on college campuses.

timpuglisi on Instagram @timpuglisi

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