The temperature of all China's air-conditioned public rooms should be kept at no lower than 26 degrees centigrade, the State Council said on Sunday.
The State Council, or the cabinet, imposed the limit in a circular to all central and local government bodies, as an effort to save China's limited energy resources and brace for the upcoming electricity demand peak in summer.
All government agencies, associations, groups, companies and private owners in public buildings should "strictly comply with this rule", said the circular.
Doors and windows should be closed when air conditioners are on, added the circular, which also sets the temprature ceiling in winter at 20 degrees centigrade.
The circular also bans air-conditioners with low energy efficiency from entering the market and encourages users to make technical changes to make air-conditioners more energy-saving.
China's need of energy has soared as the economy has grown. The shortages of coal, electric power, petroleum and shipping capacity are the big challenges that China faces in its development.
On the same day, the State Council reiterated its intention to meet strict energy efficiency and pollutant reduction targets in an official work plan.
The plan shows that China will stick to the original plan of energy saving as well as reducing major pollutant discharges by 10 percent.
(Xinhua News Agency June 4, 2007)