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By ZHENG XIN | China Daily | Updated: 2022-01-26 07:38

An employee works at a photovoltaic panel production facility in Hefei, Anhui province, on Jan 5. RUAN XUEFENG/FOR CHINA DAILY

A new five-year plan has called for energy conservation and reduction in related emissions in China.

Released by the State Council, China's Cabinet, on Monday, the plan stated that the country will appropriately control its total energy consumption and cut its energy consumption per unit of GDP by 13.5 percent by 2025 compared with the 2020 level.

China will further push the green transition in steelmaking, nonferrous metals, construction materials and petrochemical sectors, to ensure an 8 percent drop in both total emissions of ammonia nitrogen and demand for chemical oxygen.

Emissions of oxynitride and volatile organic compounds will be reduced by more than 10 percent from the 2020 level, the plan said.

The government will also step up knocking out the outdated coal-fired boilers and replace them with waste heat from industrial production and power plants, and clean energy, while further upgrading steel production capacity to achieve ultralow emissions, it said.

Ten major projects, including green upgrading in key industries, emission reductions in communication and logistics industries, and the clean and efficient use of coal, will be launched with clear targets.

According to the plan, nonfossil fuels will account for around 20 percent of the country's total energy consumption by 2025. Coal consumption in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region will drop 10 percent during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-25) while that for the Yangtze River Delta region will drop 5 percent, it said.

Policies and mechanisms for conserving energy and reducing emissions will be improved, energy use efficiency and the control of the discharge of major pollutants in key industries will basically reach advanced international levels, and notable progress should be made in the green transformation of economic and social development, said the plan.

China's energy conservation has substantially improved during the past few years, said Luo Zuoxian, head of intelligence and research at the Sinopec Economics and Development Research Institute.

"Considering the technological advances, energy conservation has substantial room for further improvement in the years to come, which will in turn ensure the country achieves its goal of peaking carbon emissions by 2030 and reaching carbon neutrality by 2060," Luo said.

"To control carbon emissions, we need a combination of measures, including vigorous expansion of clean energy to replace fossil fuels, and further investment of carbon capture, utilization and storage, or CCUS, technologies."

All regions, departments and the units concerned must fully understand the importance and urgency of energy conservation and emission reductions work, the plan said.

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