News Picks : Beijing coal ban could spell end of global boom
New Scientist: The city of Beijing has decided to ban coal burning by 2020, and China plans to prohibit the construction of new coal-fired power plants there and in several other cities. Air pollution has become increasingly severe in Beijing, due not only to coal burning but also to vehicle emissions and dust storms. To compensate for the loss of coal as an energy source, the Chinese government is investing instead in renewables and nuclear power and is promoting energy efficiency measures. Because China accounts for half the world’s coal consumption, the proposed ban could signal the end of the global boom in coal production.