China Allocates $7.3B for Rural Methane Projects to Boost Clean Energy

By | Feb 13, 2017 01:25 AM EST
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In this aerial view concrete containers that will serve to expand the biogas power facility of the adjacent dairy farm stand under construction on May 19, 2016 in Bandelow, Germany. The farm uses the manure produced daily by its 1,400 dairy cows to produce methane, which powers a generator to produce electricity the farm sells to a local utility, as well as heat for the nearby community.(Photo : Getty Images)

China will allocate 50 billion yuan ($7.3 billion) to build methane projects on rural areas to boost its clean energy use, according to the country's 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020).

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China plans to build 172 new biogas and 3,150 large-scale methane projects as it aims to increase its methane producing capacity by 4.9 billion cubic meters, based on the plan published by China's top economic planner. This will replace an equivalent of 3.49 billion tons of standard coal and will axe carbon emissions by 17.62 million tons.

The said project will also benefit over 230 million rural residents, state-backed Xinhua news reported.

The country's rapidly growing economy has witnessed a surge in rural energy consumption and increased livestock breeding and agro-industries production. As a result, these developments create billions of tons of biomass waste that can potentially be used to generate energy.

It is estimated that China produces 1.4 billion tons of rural waste materials every year. This bulk could generate 73.6 billion cubic meters of biogas and replace 87.6 million tons of standard coal.

The Chinese government has earlier said that it plans to recycle an estimated 350 million tons of waste resources such as nonferrous materials, paper, plastic, and steel every year by 2020. It plans to develop a system for renewable resources.

By 2020, China targets to recycle 150 million tons of waste steel, 18 million tons of nonferrous metals, 12 million tons of waste plastic, and at least 50 percent of its waste paper, according to an official guideline issued by the ministries of industry and information technology, commerce, and science and technology.

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