The Chinese government has announced that it is canceling plans to build more than 100 coal-fired power plants as part of efforts to rein in runaway, wasteful investment in the utility sector while moving the country away from one of the dirtiest forms of electricity generation. The announcement, made by China’s National Energy Administration, cancels 103 coal-burning power projects that were planned or under construction, eliminating 120 gigawatts of future capacity. That includes dozens of projects in 13 provinces, mostly in China’s coal-rich north and west, on which construction had already begun. Those projects alone would have had a combined output of 54 gigawatts, more than the entire coal-fired capacity of Germany, according to figures compiled by Greenpeace. China’s coal plants now run at about half of capacity, and new sources of power, like wind, solar and nuclear, are coming online at a fast clip.
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