CO2 emissions from China’s coal-to-chemical industry could increase by more than 400% over the 13th Five-Year Plan period

Press release - 2017-04-25
Beijing, 25 April, 2017 - China’s coal-to-chemical industry is projected to emit 409 million tonnes of CO2 annually by 2020 if all projects currently under construction go into operation, according to a new report released by Greenpeace East Asia.[1] This figure amounts to more than four times the 90 million tonnes emitted by China’s coal-to-chemical industry in 2015.


“At a time when China’s government is assuming greater climate leadership, the coal-to-chemical industry poses a major obstacle to the nation’s energy transition, ” said GPEA climate & energy campaigner Gan Yiwei.

Greenpeace’s findings show that if all coal-to-chemical plants that are currently under construction become operational, they will exceed the target for coal-to-chemical capacity outlined in the 13th Five-Year Plan.

The report predicts CO2 emissions from coal-to-chemical plants under three scenarios, based on the amount of capacity targeted in the 13th Five-Year Plan, the amount of capacity currently under construction and the amount of capacity that is up for approval.

China currently has 46 coal-to-chemical plants in operation and 22 under construction. The 22 under construction plants are projected to emit a combined 193 million tonnes of CO2 annually if they become operational.

The projected increase in emissions from the coal-to-chemical industry comes as China reduces its overall CO2 emissions, which have seen almost no growth for three years.[2] The coal-to-chemical industry accounted for 13% of China’s industrial emissions in 2015.

Based on these findings, Greenpeace urges that particularly high-emission projects such as coal-to-olefin no longer be approved and that no new coal-to-chemical capacity be permitted.

“It is important that China limit the coal-to-chemical industry’s development and create a more stringent project approval process,” Gan said.

Notes to editor:

[1] Full report available HERE.
[2] China coal consumption falls for third year running -- Energy Desk http://energydesk.greenpeace.org/2017/02/28/china-carbon-co2-emissions-coal-oil-energy-2016/

Media contacts:

Erin Newport, International Communications Officer
Greenpeace East Asia, Beijing | +86 18301149704 |

Greenpeace International Press Desk, , phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)

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