China to reduce energy intensity by more than 3.1 %

China has set a goal to reduce its energy intensity by more than 3.1% for 2015, Premier Li Keqiang said in a report to the annual legislative National People’s Congress on Thursday.

China exceeded its 3.9% target in 2014 for cutting its energy intensity, hitting 4.8% on a raft of environmental policies including the banning highly polluting coal and the closing down of steel mills.

Energy intensity is a measure of the amount of energy needed to increase gross domestic product; higher levels of energy intensity indicate a higher cost of converting energy into GDP.

This year’s lower goal means China is well on its way to meeting or exceeding environmental targets set out in a five-year development blueprint.

In an accompanying report from the country’s top economic planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission said Beijing will continue to “strictly control energy usage” and “continue to push the coal industry out of difficulties.”

It will press ahead with plans to build large-scale production bases for nuclear and hydropower, as part of a push for cleaner energy, the NDRC said.

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