02 Dec China has promised to cut emissions from its coal power plants by 60% by 2020
China will modernize its coal power plants by 2020 so as to cut their pollutant emissions by 60%, the Chinese government announced on Wednesday during the world Paris Climate Conference (COP21). This initiative would help save some 100 million tonnes of raw coal and prevent the discharge of about 180 million tonnes of CO2 each year, according to an official communiqué quoted by the New China Press Agency.
According to the same source, China assures that, by 2020, it will have closed the power plants that fail to comply with energy saving standards.
This announcement comes the day after a serious atmospheric pollution episode in Beijing, that was caused in particular by increased use of coal power plants for heating purposes. Yet the sky was clear and blue again on Wednesday, as the wind had blown away the yellowish fog that had hung over the Chinese capital on the previous days.
But China is still struggling with fossil fuels: more than 70% of Chinese electricity is generated from coal, of which the Asian giant consumed 4.2 billion tonnes in 2013.
China, which is the biggest coal producer and consumer in the world, moreover recently acknowledged that it had massively underestimated its consumption and in recent years had burnt hundreds of millions of tonnes more than initially announced.
China, which is the second-largest global economy and the world’s biggest polluter, pledged that its CO2 emissions would peak “around 2030.”