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More Small Thermal Power Plants Closed
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China shut down small thermal power plants with the installed capacity totaling 6.95 million kilowatts in the first half of the year, completing about 70 percent of the pre-set goal in this regard in 2007.


That was learned from an ongoing national meeting of the National Development and Reform Commission held on construction of big-capacity power plants and closure of smaller ones in south China.


China has seen a rapid growth of power industry in the recent years, and by 2006 the country's totaled installed capacity rose to 622 million kw, of which, 75 percent were from coal-fired thermal power plants which have turned out to be energy consuming and heavy polluting as well, said sources from the meeting.


The country has set out goals of reducing per-unit gross domestic product (GDP) energy consumption and discharge of main pollutants by 20 percent and 10 percent respectively by the year of 2010 according to comparable figures of 2005.


To this end, China decided to close small coal-fired generating units totaling 50 million kw, and fuel-fired power plants with capacities totaling between 7 million to 10 million kilowatts during the 2006-2010 period.


Small thermal power plants with installed capacity below 100,000 kw each totaled 115 million kilowatts, accounting for about 30 percent of installed thermal power capacity. They contributed nearly 40 percent of the 14 million tons of sulfur dioxide discharged into the air by the country's power industry last year.


If the generating units with small capacities are replaced by those with big capacities, the country could be spared from discharge of 2.2 million tons of sulfur dioxide each year.


(Xinhua News Agency August 15, 2007)


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