Water Shortages and Coal

Image | February 20, 2013

Water scarcity is worsening due to global climate change in China, where about half of coal reserves are located in water-scarce regions in northwest China. Water shortages will force parts of China to choose between using water for drinking and agriculture or coal-fired power plants, and will further encourage Chinese officials to reduce the country’s reliance on coal and shift investments to renewable energy. According to China's 12th five year plan for the coal industry (2011-2015), domestic production and consumption of coal is capped at 3.9 billion tons by the end of 2015.