China will keep a firm grip on building new coal-fired power capacity as part of a drive to deepen its green energy transition, according to a document issued by the State Council.
But the guideline gives few details about how the government will rein in the construction.
It also says China will continue to promote the proportion of low-emission, high-efficiency units in its coal fleets. The government encourages developing clean combined heat and power mode to provide heat in northern cities and towns. Construction of gas pipelines for a "coal-to-gas" heating pattern will be accelerated.
By the end of last year, China's coal-fired capacity totaled 1,095 GW, accounting for 49.8% of all installed capacity, according to statistics released by the National Energy Administration (NEA). This is the first time in history that coal's share has fallen below 50%.
The document outlines reforms focusing on energy conservation, environmental protection, clean production and clean energy, to comprehensively promote the green upgrading in agriculture, industrial and services sectors.
China plans to optimize its energy mix by "significantly" improving the green share in order to preliminarily reach a low-carbon society by 2025, the state council said. Beijing pledged last year it would peak carbon emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said in the Climate Ambition Summit in December last year that China would increase the total installed capacity of wind and solar energy to over 1,200 GW, which is about three times the size installed in 2019. China's wind installed capacity totaled 210 GW and solar 200 GW, data from the National Energy Administration showed.
China has brought about 40 GW of new solar capacity into operation in 2020, adding to the total to 240 GW, said Wang Bohua, vice-chairman of the China Photovoltaic Industry Association (CPIA). The figure could double in 2021-25, China's 14th Five-Year Plan period.
The state council also plans to actively take on trials in carbon dioxide capture, utilization and storage.
(Writing by Alex Guo Editing by Harry Huo)
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