Beijing aims to curb city's use of coal by 2020

A coal-fired power plant is pictured near a construction site in Beijing, China, December 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Lee

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s capital city Beijing is aiming to cut its coal consumption to below 5 million tonnes by 2020 and limit the use of coal in smog-prone areas, a document issued by the Beijing Municipal Government showed on Tuesday.

The city, which suffers from bouts of choking pollution, also pledged in a five-year-plan to boost renewable energy’s share of total energy consumption to at least 8 percent by 2020 from 6.6 percent in 2015.

Beijing currently uses about 11 million tonnes of coal a year but has been strongly promoting the use of gas and renewable energy.

The city also aims to keep total annual energy consumption below 76 million tonnes of coal equivalent by 2020, compared with 68.5 million tonnes in 2015, the document showed.

It will also try to cap total emissions of CO2, or climate-warming greenhouse gas, by around 2020 or even earlier, according to the plan.

Reporting by Muyu Xu and Beijing Newsroom; Editing by Richard Pullin