The Chinese government has pledged to peak carbon emissions by 2030 in response to climate change. As a relatively large and fast-growing renewable energy source, it is important to explore the development path of the wind and solar power to achieve a low-carbon transition. In this paper, we use Long-range Energy Alternatives Planning System (LEAP) to simulate energy consumption and carbon emissions in China. The learning curve model characterizes the relationship between renewable energy technology maturity and installed market size. In this study, four scenarios with eight sub-scenarios are constructed. The results show that early and appropriate increases in investment in wind power and PV can help accelerate the technology maturity and the reduction of technology costs which will bring long-term benefits. Meanwhile, the appropriately accelerated wind power and PV development planning can effectively reduce the carbon peak level and cumulative carbon emissions.
Keywords Technology maturity, Renewable energy, Path planning, LEAP