A big thanks to our moderator, Marc Gunther, and our panel, including Jesse Jenkins and Commissioner Carolyn Bartholomew. We had a great conversation with a lot of audience participation (see the questions below). You can listen to the webinar below or download for later!

Listen to the audio: (length 01:01:10)

    or download here (right-click, save as)

A few questions that were asked during the presentation:

  • Isn't the point about China more a result of GROWTH as stated than anything else?  Even if they allocate a small portion of their growt the be "clean" or "green", it could still dwarf the US
  • China just announced they have started a Thorium Molten Salt Reactor which is an American invention. Have you heard about this technology?
  • What/Who are the top 3 American renewable energy "players" in China (companies/persons) and do they tend to open or bar entry for smaller entities/initiatives?
  • RE: china's wind sector, three of the world's top ten turbine producers are Chinese, but how many of their turbines are exported?  Are they competitive in terms of reliability with Vestas, GE, etc.?  Is china really a global player in wind if they only serve the domestic market?
  • If China really wants to dominate a market, are we able to stop it with policiy alone?  Is there an example of a market we have "protected" successfully?
  • They are advancing in Nuclear because they don't have restrictive regulations.
  • China GDP is estimated to quadruple in 5 years
  • Why is the manufaturing so important while that part in developing a product counts less than half of the price of the product?
  • Regardless of the need for a sound manufacturing base, is it realistic to try and compete with a state run industry to force a manufacturing balance for clean energy?  Or are we better off investing in where we excel - ingenuity and invention?
  • For Bartholomew: If the question is U.S. jobs, we should look at the whole value-added chain of clean energy. Many clean energy trade associations have come out with figures as high as 70% of jobs are created on-site after taking into account imported components? Shouldn't we look at this more wholistically, where R&D, installation, maintenance and support are put on the same economic and political footing as manufacturing?
  • China has 1500 million people. Is the employment an ethically correct reason to be used by US or Europe?
  • India and China have around 50% of the population, so they need he jobs even more than we do!
  • What about Obama's idea of increases railroads? Is there no manufacturing opportunites and cutting down on polluting vehicles is a good thing.
  • Can Carolyn expand on her point. How does China's unprecedented growth question standard economic theory?
  • Large steel forgings for reactor pressure vessels can no longer be built in the US. Where wil Cina build theirs for the AP1000?

According to a 2010 International Energy Agency report, Chinese energy consumption has doubled over the past decade, and will soar 75 percent by 2035, accounting for more than a third of total global consumption growth. To date, the largest portion of this demand has been met by burning coal, raising serious concerns about CO2 emissions and the battle against climate change, but China has also begun to aggressively invest in alternative energy.


Commissioner Carolyn Bartholomew was reappointed to the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on December 31, 2011, after previously serving as the Commission’s Chairman for the 2007 and 2009 report cycles and as the Vice Chairman for the 2006, 2008 and 2010 report cycles. She has served as Counsel, Legislative Director, and Chief of Staff to now House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, and was a Professional Staff Member on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

Jesse Jenkins is Director of Energy and Climate Policy at the Breakthrough Institute, and is one of the country's leading energy and climate policy analysts and advocates. He is the co-author with Devon Swezey of the "Rising Tigers, Sleeping Giant" report on global clean energy competitiveness strategies, and is currently working on an update to the report. Jesse has written for publications including the San Francisco Chronicle, Baltimore Sun, Yale Environment 360, Grist.org, and HuffingtonPost.com, and his published works on energy policy have been cited by many more. He is founder and chief editor of WattHead - Energy News and Commentary and a featured wr iter at the Energy Collective.

Marc Gunther is a veteran journalist, speaker, writer and consultant whose focus is business and sustainability. Marc is a contributing editor at FORTUNE magazine, a senior writer at Greenbiz.com, a lead blogger at The Energy Collective. He's also a husband and father, a lover of the outdoors and a marathon runner. Marc is the author or co-author of four books, including Faith and Fortune: How Compassionate Capitalism is Transforming American Business. He's a graduate of Yale who lives in Bethesda, MD.