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The good news is that China, the world leader in electric vehicle production and use, has launched the world’s first all-electric, 2,200-ton cargo ship. The bad news is that the groundbreaking vessel is being used to haul coal.

好消息是,中国是世界上电动汽车生产和使用的引领者,它已经推出了世界上第一艘全电动的2200吨货船。坏消息是,这艘具有开创性的电动传播正被用来运送煤炭。

Since shipping is poorly regulated and runs almost entirely on heavy fuel oil, the trillion-dollar industry is a major polluter. Major ports are notorious for having unhealthy air.

由于航运业缺乏规范,而且几乎完全依靠重油为动力,这个价值万亿美元的产业是一个主要的污染来源。一些主要港口因为空气不健康而臭名昭著。

And even though the industry generates some 3 percent of global carbon pollution, the 2015 Paris climate agreement doesn’t even cover shipping, since it targets emissions by nations, not transport between them.

尽管该行业产生了约3%的全球碳污染,但2015年巴黎气候协议甚至没有涵盖航运业,因为它的目标是各国国内的排放,而不是各国之间的运输。

That leaves much of the job of cleaning up the industry to individual companies. So it should be a welcome moment that China’s Guangzhou Shipyard International has launched “the world’s first electric ship with a capacity” of 2,200 tons, as the state-run Global Times reported earlier this month.

这就使得让这个行业清洁化的大量工作都留给了企业而不是国家。因此,本月早些时候,国有媒体《环球时报》报道称,中国的广船国际公司已经推出了“世界上第一艘吨位达2200吨的电力船”,这是一个可喜的时刻。

The ship is short-haul: It can travel about 50 miles with its 1,000 lithium batteries after two-hour charge, which is the loading and unloading time for the ship, state news site ChinaNews.com reports. So it can be charged while it is docking.

据中国新闻网报道,这艘船适用于短途运输:在经过两小时——这也是船的装卸货时间——的充电后,它可以用1000个锂电池航行约50英里。所以它可以在入港的时候进行充电。



Sadly, the Chinese spoiled the launch of this otherwise green cargo ship by using it to transport coal for electricity generation on the Pearl River in Guangdong Province. The ship can carry up to 2,300 tons of coal, though ChinaNews.com reports such vessels could in the future be used for “passenger ships, ro-ro ships [roll-on/roll-off vessels carrying wheeled cargo] engineering vessels” and similar purposes.

令人遗憾的是,中国在广东珠江上用这艘船来运输煤炭进行发电,从而破坏了这艘绿色货船的下水意义。这艘船可以装载2300吨的煤,不过中国网报道说,这艘船将来可能会被用作“客船、滚装船、装载轮式货物工程船”以及类似的目的。

“This kind of ship takes into consideration the harmony between humans and nature and can protect water quality and marine life, and should be copied by other ships sailing on local rivers,” Chinese environmentalist Wang Yongchen told the Global Times.

中国环保人士Wang Yongchen对环球时报说:“这种船考虑到了人类和自然之间的和谐,可以保护水质和海洋生物,应该值得其他在当地河流上航行的船只学习。”

Certainly running on electricity of any kind is better for the local environment than burning heavy fuel oil. But moving rapidly off of coal generation is the only way China can ensure that the total lifecycle emissions of transporting cargo on an all-electric ship is beneficial to both their country’s air quality and the world’s effort to preserve a livable climate.

当然,任何形式的电力供应都比燃烧重油更有利于当地环境。但是,迅速摆脱煤炭发电是中国能够确保货船整个生命周期的排放既有利于其国家的空气质量和全球保持宜居气候努力的唯一方式。