China to limit coal production?

Written by Paul Adkins

China, the world’s biggest polluter, may impose a cap on the country’s coal production by 2015 and enforce energy consumption targets to cut carbon emissions and reduce reliance on fossil fuels, according to a local Chinese newspaper.

“There must be a ceiling on coal output in the future, and energy needs can be met with new and renewable energy,” Wu Yin, a deputy director at the National Energy Administration, told the official China Energy News weekly newspaper in an interview.Wu didn’t specify any production targets.

China, the world’s biggest user and producer of coal, wants 15 percent of its energy mix to come from non-fossil fuel sources by 2020 to help meet emissions targets. By 2015, coal may meet 65 percent of the country’s energy needs compared with 70 percent currently, Wu said in the July 26 issue of the paper. “China needs a cap on both its energy consumption and carbon emissions to achieve sustainable development of its economy,” Jiang Kejun, head of energy and market analysis at the National Development and Reform Commission’s energy research institute, said by telephone today.

The country will cut output of carbon dioxide per unit of gross domestic product by between 40 percent and 45 percent by 2020 from 2005 levels, according to a statement by the State Council, or cabinet, in November last year. China may set targets for consumption of energy, including coal, for certain industries and regions, Wu told the newspaper, without giving details. About 80 percent of the country’s power plants are fueled by coal.

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