"I don’t see any technology that can make the economy grow continuously and achieve the goal of double carbon, only the next generation of digital technology." This is the view of Wang Jian, member of Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and academician of China Academy of Engineering, on the topic of realizing the goal of double carbon.
Digitalization is the "experimental field" and "enabler" to promote the "double carbon" goal. Information technology leads the development of digital industrialization with its characteristics of high efficiency, integration and green, and drives digital industrialization to become a good "experimental field" for the development of low-carbon life; Digitalization of industry empowers a wider range of production and life fields, and is committed to reducing actual energy consumption, which is an important "enabler" of low-carbon life’s development.
I. Digitalization and Energy Transformation
At present, China’s energy intensity has improved compared with before, and the energy consumed to produce one unit of GDP is 1.5 times the world average and 2.7 times that of OECD countries. After the progress, it is even more necessary to reduce the energy intensity, that is, to produce a unit of GDP and use less energy: "If we reduce the current 1.5 to 1.0, it means that we can use less than one billion tons of coal every year."
Another way to reduce carbon emissions is to optimize the energy structure. We should recognize both fossil energy resources and non-fossil energy resources, especially renewable energy resources, and gradually reduce the use of fossil energy.
At present, our fossil energy still accounts for more than 80%, and coal alone accounts for 56%. First of all, we must make good use of coal. China’s coal reserve-production ratio is 40 years, oil reserve-production ratio is 18 years, and natural gas reserve-production ratio is 30 years. Although coal is relatively rich in oil and gas, China’s coal is not rich, and its per capita possession is half of the world average. Therefore, we should pay attention to saving, efficient and clean utilization of coal and gradually develop non-fossil energy.
In this process, digital technology is indispensable. "Digitalization is of great significance and can improve the efficiency of the whole energy, economy and all aspects of work."
Second, digital twinning provides a method for predicting the future environmental climate.
At present, scientists use a large number of digital models to predict, forecast and warn air pollution, its climate warming and sea level rise. These digital models can simulate the changes of PM2.5 or temperature at different scales in the region and even in the world.
Among them, digital twinning has become an important forecasting tool, which plays an important role in revealing the environmental impact on health and its preventive measures. Using big data and artificial intelligence can effectively reduce pollution and carbon, synergize and slow down climate change.
In the future, whether it is a digital or low-carbon city, it is necessary to realize the coordinated control of air pollution and climate change through the synergy of health benefits. On the basis of setting targets of peak carbon dioxide emissions and carbon neutrality, it is necessary to set targets of health improvement. At the same time, use big data and artificial intelligence to study the relationship between air, climate and health, and promote the synergy of pollution reduction and carbon reduction.
Third, digitalization promotes green development
Why can digital technology help green? Because digitalization is the most intuitive and comprehensive.
We can use the existing advanced technology of artificial intelligence to carry out all-round digital simulation of various environmental protection projects, deduce the possibility scheme of the whole cycle, and select the best scheme.
Secondly, digitalization, as a process to promote the deep integration of digital technology and economy and society, provides energy-saving and carbon-reducing application scenarios for energy, construction, transportation, industry and other fields, and needs to comprehensively improve the green utilization efficiency of data, production and operation efficiency and green management efficiency in all fields.
Moreover, the role of digitalization in empowering green development in various fields of production, life and social governance is increasingly prominent. Empowering green with data value mining should make it an important foundation for supporting the comprehensive green transformation of economic and social development.
Fourth, digital energy consumption is also a problem that must be paid attention to.
Undeniably, there are also some problems in the coordinated transformation of digitalization and greening.
Artificial intelligence with machine learning, deep learning and big data as its core content, its key elements such as data, algorithm and computing power, especially computing power, are continuously causing huge energy consumption. At present, the deep learning framework based on big data is not green AI. Big data has small rules, large power consumption and small benefits, and its large-scale calculation relies on energy consumption, which also produces amazing carbon consumption.
Therefore, the sustainable development of digital economy depends on the coordinated development of green economy, especially the fundamental transformation of energy system from fossil energy to renewable energy.