China’s Inner Mongolia to spend $79 billion on clean energy by 2025 – more than half of its power will come from renewables by 2030.

The Inner Mongolia autonomous region is China’s second-biggest source of coal. It recently outlined its five-year plan where it commited to adding 51 gigawatts of wind power and 33 gigawatts of solar over the five-year period through 2025, as well as building some pumped hydro and storage.

A wind farm in Inner Mongolia autonomous region. [File photo/Xinhua]

Inner Mongolia aims to have over 135 gigawatts of renewable capacity installed by 2025, more than the amount of coal-fired power it aims to have by then. The region said it was also planning more than 5 gigawatts of energy storage and would prepare to build 3.6 gigawatts of pumped hydro storage capacity by 2025 to help adjust to unstable wind and solar generation.

An April 2021 Energy Foundation China report indicated that Inner Mongolia’s emission had the highest per-capita emissions in the country, at the equivalent of 22.8 tonnes of CO2 in 2018. That is far higher than the China average of less than 10 tonnes, as calculated by the UN Environment Programme in 2019. 

The announcement is significant, as unlike many Western nations that set grand targets but rarely deliver, experience shows that when China sets a goal it delivers (often ahead of schedule).

The 200 MW Kubuqi solar power station, Inner Mongolia (Photo: People’s Daily)

According to media reports “Inner Mongolia is planning to spend about 500 billion yuan ($79 billion) on clean energy through 2025, and aims to generate more than half of its power from renewables by the end of the decade.The autonomous region in northern China, the country’s second-biggest source of coal, outlined the goals in a five-year plan. Inner Mongolia said it would add 51 gigawatts of wind power and 33 gigawatts of solar over the five-year period through 2025, as well as building some pumped hydro and storage.”

“Chinese local governments are setting their own targets to meet Beijing’s goal off peaking emissions by 2030 and then achieving carbon neutrality by 2060. Existing development plans for about two-thirds of the country’s regional governments indicate China could meet a target of having 1.2 terawatts of renewable capacity five years ahead of schedule.”

Source: International Institute of Green Finance, ** IIGF Newsletter, April, 2022. https://iigf-china.com/international-institute-of-green-finance

**The IIGF is a leading think tank on green finance. It was established in 2016 based in Beijing. IIGF conducts research on green finance on a wide array of topics such as credit, bonds, funds, insurance, carbon-trading, local pilots, international cooperation, ESG rating, as well as risk assessment.

A link to the plan (in Chinese) is at: https://www.nmg.gov.cn/zwgk/zfxxgk/zfxxgkml/202203/t20220304_2012787.html

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