CICC Publishes Thematic Research on How AI Empowers Achievement of Carbon Neutrality
(July 14, 2021, Beijing) China International Capital Corporation Limited (CICC, 3908.HK, 601995.SH) held the Investment and Financing Theme Forum at the 2021 World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai, during which it published a research report, Achieving Carbon Neutrality amid Thriving AI. CICC Research’s Technology Group has joined together with multiple sector research teams to complete this in-depth analysis covering potential scenarios for AI-enabled carbon emission reduction. The report demonstrates the practical effects and the evolutionary trends of AI in terms of improving efficiency, saving energy, as well as reducing emissions consumption. Peng Hu, Chief Analyst of CICC’s Technology Hardware Group, delivered a keynote speech to the conference, analyzing how AI can help achieve carbon neutrality, as well as the investment opportunities in the technology industry, for example, AI-enabled cities, AI-enabled vehicles, AI-enabled smart manufacturing, and AI-enabled power.
Carbon neutrality, an important application for AI
After the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference, the achievement of carbon neutrality has become a global goal. As of the end of 2020, 44 countries and regions around the world made commitments on carbon neutrality. China also announced that it would achieve peak carbon levels by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2060.
CICC believes that the key to achieving carbon neutrality lies in the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP, which puts pressure on areas such as energy, transportation, manufacturing and urban construction planning in the context of China's rapid economic growth. AI is expected to promote efficiency and consumption reduction in a number of different areas and help achieve the goal of carbon neutrality. Peng explains that AI can help in three ways: prediction, monitoring and optimization.
AI helps carbon neutrality in four major areas
In Peng’s view, AI could help achieve the goal of carbon neutrality in the four fields, namely cities, smart manufacturing, vehicles and power.
• City planning - AI could be used to dynamically predict urban development, improve the structure of cities, and ease problems related to long-distance commuting.
• Smart manufacturing - AI could help cut production costs and improve the efficiency.
• Vehicles - AI will drive the transformation of the traditional automotive industry, improve the consumer experience in the fields of self-driving and intelligent logistics, as well as reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions.
• Power, AI will play an important role in the digitalization of the power grid, improve overall energy supply efficiency of the power system, and achieve the effect of reducing carbon emissions.
Investment opportunities in the science and technology industries against the backdrop of carbon neutrality
ESG investing has become a global trend. Peng believes that the ESG investment philosophy will prompt listed companies to pay more attention to the control of carbon emissions. Over the long term, companies with higher ESG level will achieve better operation results and more sustainable returns, which creates new investment opportunities. Peng points out that AI should also be filled with “humanistic care”, which is not only a technical term that means increase efficiency and profits, but also plays a greater role in improving the living environment, creating social welfare and enhancing human well-being.
Peng suggests to focus the investment opportunities in the following 10 areas amid AI-enabled carbon neutrality: 1) smart power grids; 2) drones for civilian use; 3) mobile robots; 4) industrial internet platforms; 5) machine vision; 6) smart cities; 7) cloud computing; 8) AI chips; 9) intelligent driving; and 10) sensors. According to the CICC’s forecast, the increase of the market size of these 10 areas is around RMB 2 trillion in China over the next decade (2021–2030).
To read the full research report, click here: