The world will likely avoid global warming of more than 2 deg C, thanks to China's emissions which are set to peak five years earlier than expected, new research indicates.
The analysis from the London School of Economics (LSE) based on China's key emitting sectors lauds the structural economic changes and government policies that have combined to cause a "remarkably rapid shift" in the trajectory of China's emissions.
The earlier peaking would restrict emissions to between 12.5 and 14 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide, and help avoid the 2 C rise.
In fact, the emissions could peak even earlier, the analysis says, coming as a whiff of welcome news amidst the ongoing stalemate at the Bonn climate talks.
The Bonn talks which are to conclude on Friday (12 June) saw a fresh war of words between the EU and developing countries with the latter demanding more commitments from the developed bloc in the pre-2020 period.
The EU has indicated it is unlikely to raise emission cuts in the period anymore.
The 11-day Bonn talks were tasked with sizing down the 90-page draft for the 30 November-11 December UN conference in Paris.
A week of wrangling has only managed to reduce the document by 5%.
In a historic deal made along with the US, China's President Xi Jinping had agreed last year to reduce his country's carbon emissions by 2030. However, China's adoption of a cleaner economic growth model has been credited by the LSE for a quicker-than-promised halt to rising emissions.
Among other things, the report points to data showing Chinese coal consumption falling in 2014 and the first three months of 2015.
The report's authors, economist Lord Nicholas Stern and researcher Fergus Green, write: "China's transformation has profound implications for the global economy, and greatly increases the prospects for keeping global greenhouse gas emissions within relatively safe limits."
However, the paper notes: "Whether the world can get onto that pathway [and limit global warming to no more 2°C] in the decade or more after 2020 depends in significant part on China's ability to reduce its emissions at a rapid rate, post-peak (as opposed to emissions plateauing for a long time), on the actions of other countries in the next two decades, and on global actions over the subsequent decades."
It adds: "The United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris later this year will be more successful if governments everywhere understand the extent of change in China, its implications for global emissions, and the positive impact that China's clean industrial development, investment and innovation plans are likely to have on global markets for clean goods and services (and the adverse implications for exporters of coal and certain other raw materials)."
China is the top emitter of greenhouse gases with estimates putting its emissions at 10.3 billion tonnes in 2013.
G-7 on climate
The Group of Seven is also pushing for nations to aim for emission cuts near 70% of 2010 levels by mid-century, the G7 said in a statement.
"This long-term decarbonisation goal will make evident to corporations and financial markets that the most lucrative investments will stem from low-carbon technologies," said Jennifer Morgan, global director of the climate programme at the World Resources Institute in Washington.
The commitments include expanding renewable energies in Africa and getting 400 million people access to insurance against the negative effects of climate change, the G7 said.
The group also called for more climate aid, report Bloomberg and AFP.
Wealthy nations and private investors agreed in 2009 to hand $100bn a year to developing nations by 2020 as a green fund to encourage clean technologies.
Few rich countries have set out exactly how they will reach that goal. This has been a sore point with developing nations demanding more funds to help them make the transition to a decarbonised economy.
"Elmau delivered," said Greenpeace climate expert Martin Kaiser, adding that at the summit "the vision of a 100% renewable energy future is starting to take shape while spelling out the end of coal".
He added, however, that "some G7 leaders have left the door open for high risk technologies, like nuclear energy and carbon capture and storage".