Beijing announced this week that while China may be the king of coal power, it at least has the cleanest coal plants, with three-quarters of its coal power plants now having been fitted with emission-cutting technology, reports Caixin. The past four decades have seen cheap coal power plants supports the nation’s unparalleled economic growth. The plants caused significant ecological and environmental damage however, forcing authorities to prioritize efforts in cleaning up, particularly in the northern cities that have become known for their high levels of smog.
A landmark was celebrated this week, with at least 700 gigawatts of power plants having now been fitted with “ultra-low emission” technology. This means the country has more than achieved its aim of fitting 580 gigawatts-worth of plants with the technology two years ahead of schedule.
“At present, the emission levels of soot, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides in coal-fired power plants in China are close to those of gas-fired power plants, which are stricter than the emission requirements of developed countries by more than 50%,” explained the president of government think tank the State Power Environmental Protection Research Institute of China, Zhu Fahua, in a Xinhua report.