[Ferro-Alloys.com] China has lowered the target for coal's share in its primary energy mix as it continues to encourage the use of cleaner energy to combat air pollution.
China aims to reduce the share of coal to around 57.5pc of primary energy this year, the national energy administration (NEA) said in its 2020 guidelines for national energy development. This is a slight decline from 57.7pc in 2019.
The latest target is also marginally more ambitious than the previous goal of reducing coal's share to 58pc in 2020, which was set in the 13th national five-year plan released in 2016.
Coal consumption has increased, even amid the government efforts to reduce coal's share of total energy, because of organic growth in overall energy demand. Coal consumption increased by 1pc from a year earlier in 2019 because of stronger power demand, the national bureau of statistics (NBS) said, without giving a specific consumption figure. This was the third consecutive annual increase.
China will continue to replace coal-fired with electricity-based heating to limit the increase in coal consumption, the NEA said. It will accelerate the construction of LNG pipelines and storage facilities, while continuing to develop solar and wind power projects.
Beijing also outlined a plan to reduce "outdated" coal capacity, in line with the planed curbs on coal consumption. A batch of outdated mines should be shut permanently this year to cap the number of coal mines in the country at 5,000, the national development and reform commission (NDRC) said last week.
Beijing's continued efforts to limit the use of coal could weigh on import demand in the longer term. China imported 148.71mn t of coal in January-May, up by 17pc from the year-earlier period.
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