China has capped its consumption of standard coal at 5 billion tonnes by 2020, the first time it has put a limit on annual energy consumption.
The latest five-year plan – which comes as China prepares to slash overcapacity in its bloated steel sector – raises coal consumption from 4.3 billion tonnes in 2015.
The plan also said that energy intensity – the consumption per unit of economic growth – would be cut by 15 per cent compared with 2015 levels. Carbon emissions per unit of economic growth would drop by 18 per cent compared with 2015’s levels, it added.
The rates of growth in energy consumption in China has slowed as the country’s economy has slowed. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, China’s total energy consumption rose by only 0.9 per cent in 2015 compared with 2014 – the lowest increase since.