China’s Premier Li Keqiang delivered a government work report on March 5, stressing that the nation will continue to enhance its ecological environment and encourage green and low-carbon growth, as reported by Reuters on the same day. According to the premier’s address, China will focus its efforts on reducing pollution in key rivers, lakes, and bays, as well as on soil pollution prevention and control. It will also continue to support green and low-carbon technology research, development, and application, as well as energy conservation and carbon emission reduction in the steel, non-ferrous, petrochemical, chemical, and building materials sectors.
In addition, Premier Li stated that economic stability, food security, and energy security remain top priorities for the country. To balance decarbonization with economic needs, reduction of coal consumption will be done in a “well-ordered way”, according to the premier. The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has recently warned against overly simplistic and mechanical implementation of decarbonization policies by local governments. China’s carbon emission intensity was 51.9% lower in 2019 than it had been in 2005, equivalent to a cumulative reduction of 5.7bn tons of carbon dioxide emissions. Non-fossil energy use has also risen over the years, accounting for 15.3% of total energy consumption in China in 2019, a 7.9% increase from 2005.