The slow death of 'King Coal'

Updated: 2013-09-18 07:49

By Jiang Xueqing (China Daily)

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Seeking to reduce air pollution, Beijing municipal's government has decided to cut coal consumption to 15 million metric tons by 2015, from 23.3 million tons in 2012, and to less than 10 million tons by 2017.

Having already transformed the energy supply of nearly 200,000 families from coal to electricity, the government plans to extend the process to a further 44,000 households.

It has also pledged to eliminate most of the coal-fired boilers in the city's downtown districts by the end of 2015.

In 2014, four major thermal gas power centers will become operational and will replace existing coal-fired units at three State-owned thermal power plants. In the period 2011-15, gas-fired units will replace industrial boilers with a steam-generation capacity of more than 20 tons per hour and coal-fired boilers in 19 national-and-city-level industrial development zones. After the changeover, all gas-fired boilers will employ low-nitrogen-emission technology.

In addition, the pace of construction of the rail transit system will be accelerated and the city will work to increase the length of the system to 660 kilometers in 2015. It expects to see approximately 52 percent of residents using public transport in the city's downtown areas by 2017.

Beijing will also try to implement a more stringent vehicle emissions standard, called China VI, in 2016, further control the excessive number of motor vehicles, and eliminate 1 million old vehicles by 2017.

(China Daily USA 09/18/2013 page9)