China to invest $520b in clean fuel

China will plough 2.5 trillion yuan (S$361 billion) into renewable power generation by 2020 in an investment that will, it's projected, create a massive 13 million jobs in the sector.

BEIJING • China will plough 2.5 trillion yuan (S$520.5 billion) into renewable power generation by 2020, the country's energy agency said yesterday, as the world's largest energy market continues to shift away from dirty coal power towards cleaner fuels.

The investment will create over 13 million jobs in the sector, the National Energy Administration (NEA) said in a blueprint document that lays out its plan to develop the nation's energy sector from 2016 to 2020.

The NEA said installed renewable power capacity, including wind, hydro, solar and nuclear power, will contribute to about half of new electricity generation by 2020.

It did not disclose where the funds would be spent. Still, the investment reflects Beijing's continued focus on curbing the use of fossil fuels as it ramps up its war on pollution.

Last month, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the country's economic planner, said in its own five-year plan that solar power will receive 1 trillion yuan of spending, as the country seeks to boost capacity by five times. That is equivalent to about 1,000 major solar power plants, according to experts' estimates.

The spending comes as the cost of building large-scale solar plants has dropped by as much as 40 per cent since 2010.

China became the world's top solar generator last year.

Some 700 billion yuan will go towards wind farms, 500 billion yuan to hydro power, with tidal and geothermal getting the rest, the NDRC said.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 06, 2017, with the headline 'China to invest $520b in clean fuel'. Print Edition | Subscribe