China to double wind, solar energy capacity

China aims to double its wind and solar capacity by 2025, according to a new road map to bolster energy security of the Middle Kingon, which has the dubious distinction of being the world’s biggest polluter..

The world’s biggest polluter earlier estimated it needs to double wind and solar use by 2030 to deliver on its pledges under the Paris climate accord.

The latest plan is a part of China pledges under the Paris Climate Accord, says a media report, while noting that Beijing has ramped up reliance on coal-fired power plants in recent months to support its ailing economy.

China, already the world’s largest producer of renewable energy, has accelerated investment in solar and wind projects to tackle pollution at home, which researchers say kills millions every year, The Star reported.

Beijing has pledged to peak emissions by 2030 and become carbon neutral by 2060.

Investment in solar energy nearly tripled in the first four months of the year to 29 billion yuan compared with January to April investment in the previous year, data from the National Energy Administration shows.

But China ‘s energy policy has remained a two-headed beast, with the country burning about half the coal used globally each year to power its economy, the report added.

As the Ukraine war pushed up prices of oil and natural gas, Premier Li Keqiang said coal underpinned China ‘s energy security, and the central bank approved a US$15bn credit line to fund coal mining and coal-fired plants.

Local governments started building new power plants that will boost capacity from coal by the most since 2016, after an energy crunch paralysed swathes of the economy .

Says Lauri Myllyvirta, lead analyst at the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air: “Energy security – avoiding another energy shortage and managing geopolitical risks – is the overwhelming priority” for China with the economic outlook uncertain.

The latest energy plan says renewables will supply “50% of the growth in power consumption” to 2025, lower than previous official estimates and signalling more room to expand coal power.

“The planners are projecting, or preparing for, faster demand growth which would see fossil fuel use and emissions still increase,” Myllyvirta said.

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