A government official from China’s eastern province of Shandong announced Thursday that the region plans to shut down 1.23 million tons of coal capacity, according to Reuters. The statement came two days after Shandong was singled out for criticism by the central government in Beijing over its failure to proactively cut coal capacity.
The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) released a statement on Tuesday accusing Shandong officials of misleading authorities to evade cuts in the polluting coal, steel, aluminum and chemical sectors.
“Local authorities in Shandong performed badly on reducing coal use… total coal consumption in 2015 and 2016 increased by 6.94 million tons and 7.06 million tons respectively compared to the level in 2012,” the MEP said in the statement.
The statement followed inspections of Shandong by central government inspectors in the summer, during which Shandong said it had met the 2017 target of eliminating 2.55 million tons of coal capacity.