China had 210 coal power projects set for environmental assessment at the end of 2015, 95 of which had received permission to begin construction despite already chronic overcapacity in the domestic coal sector, Reuters reported, citing research by Greenpeace East Asia. 66 of the projects saw construction begin, amounting to a combined capacity of 73 gigawatts in coal-fired generating capacity. Total generation capacity grew 10.4% last year despite annual power generation falling by 0.2% and power consumption growing only 0.5%. Thermal power generation capacity – mostly from coal – rose 7.8% in 2015 even as actual thermal generation fell by 2.8%, indicating a rise in the number of idle coal power plants.
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