Yue Qin Postdoc    |
About Yue
Postdoctoral Scholar, Mueller and Davis Groups | University of California, Irvine

Yue's postdoctoral research focuses on evaluating the inertia of global water demand in the energy and agriculture sectors, as well as characterizing the vulnerability of agriculture to future changes in snowmelt runoff due to a warming climate. She received her Ph.D. from the Science, Technology and Environmental Policy (STEP) program at Woodrow Wilson School of Public Policy and International Affairs at Princeton University Yue’s research focuses on the environmental implications of China’s energy policies, advised by Prof. Denise L. Mauzerall. Yue also holds a masters degree in Environmental Science from Peking University in China (2012), and bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering from Beijing Normal University in China (2009).

Curriculum Vitae
Google Scholar
Recent Publications and Presentations
Committed emissions from existing energy infrastructure jeopardize 1.5°C climate target
Nature | July 1, 2019

If operated as historically, existing fossil energy infrastructure will emit >650 Gt of CO2, well over the most recent 1.5°C carbon budgets and 2/3 of the remaining 2°C budget. There is thus little or no room for new fossil infrastructure under the targets; rather existing infrastructure must be retired early.

Tong et al. 2019

Selected Press: NPR, NatGeo, LA Times, MIT Tech, Reuters, WaPo
Flexibility and intensity of global water use
Nature Sustainability | June 3, 2019

Some water uses are more or less flexible than others due to larger curtailment costs or social impacts. We construct and present a new water stress index that integrates water scarcity, flexibility, and variability, and use it to evaluate the most-stressed basins worldwide.

Qin et al. 2019

Selected Press: Nature
Air quality-carbon-water synergies and trade-offs in China’s natural gas industry
Nature Sustainability | September 14, 2018

We examine the air quality-carbon-water interdependencies of China’s six major natural gas sources and three end-use gas-for-coal substitution strategies in 2020, finding that replacing coal with gas sources other than coal-based synthetic natural gas results in enormous variations in air quality, carbon, and water improvements, with notable air quality-carbon synergies but air quality-water trade-offs.

Qin et al., 2017

Challenges of using natural gas as a carbon mitigation option in China
Energy Policy | June, 2018

Substituting natural gas for coal may facilitate China’s commitment to peak its CO2 emissions on or before 2030, but there are three major challenges: 1) A price dilemma dis-incentivizing a coal-to-gas end-use energy transition, 2) Constrained access to natural gas infrastructure hinders connections between gas supplies and end-users, and 3) Methane leakage from the natural gas industry.

Qin et al., 2017

Air quality, human health and climate implications of China’s synthetic natural gas development
PNAS | March 6, 2017

China’s coal-based synthetic natural gas projects can reduce air pollution and associated premature mortality by substituting for direct coal use, but come with increased CO2 emissions unless carbon capture and storage (CCS) is used. Even with CCS, SNG has higher CO2 emissions than conventional natural gas.

Qin et al., 2017

Can switching from coal to shale gas bring net carbon reductions to China?
Environmental Science & Technology | February 8, 2017

Analyzing lifecycle GHG emissions from China’s shale gas system, we find the breakeven methane leakage rates are approximately 6.0%, 7.7%, and 4.2% in the power, residential, and industrial sectors, respectively, under GWP20. Shale gas in China thus has a good chance of delivering air quality and climate co-benefits.

Qin et al., 2017