China pledges to raise renewable energy use
China will increase its use of renewable resources to 15 percent of total
energy consumption by 2020 in a bid to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and
pursue sustainable economic growth, according to a national plan published
China's renewable energy use is expected to total 600 million
tons of coal equivalent in 2020, compared with 166 million tons in 2005, or 7.5
percent of the country's total energy consumption.
The plan is estimated
to cost China two trillion yuan (US$266.7 billion) during the 2006-2020 period,
said Chen Deming, vice minister in charge of the National Development and Reform
As coal currently supplies most of China's energy needs and
causes serious pollution, the plan highlights the development of hydropower,
wind power, biomass and solar energy, which will enable the country to develop
in an economical, clean and safe way, officials said.
Premier Wen Jiabao
said earlier this year that "the current macro-control policy must focus on
energy conservation and emissions reduction; otherwise China's natural resources
and environment will not be able to sustain economic development."
2020, the country's installed hydropower capacity is expected to reach 300
million kilowatts, wind power capacity 30 million kw, biomass power 30 million
kw and solar power 1.8 million kw, according to the plan published by the
China will make great efforts to cope with climate change, though
its carbon dioxide emissions accounted for only nine percent of the world's
total from 1950 to 2002, Chen said. The country's per-capita emissions were 87
percent of the world average in 2004, he said.
Carbon dioxide is produced
by burning coal, oil and gas for heat, power and transportation and is believed
to be a major contributor to global warming.
"The international community
should give China the right to and room for development," Chen
"China has emitted a bit more carbon dioxide because developed
countries have transferred some of their energy-consuming industries to China,"
the official said.
"As far as I know, the European Union plans to raise
the ratio of renewable energy in its total energy consumption to 20 percent by
2020, and no other big powers have such plans."
China will also provide
electricity to remote regions and alleviate fuel shortages in rural areas by
using renewable energy.
By 2020, about 300 million rural people will use
biogas as their main fuel, when China is expected to use 10 million tons of
bio-ethanol and two million tons of bio-diesel to replace 10 million tons of oil