China expects its energy consumption to grow in 2016, the official Xinhua news agency of the world’s largest energy consumer said on Tuesday. China’s apparent demand for crude oil will reach 550 million tonnes (11 million barrels per day) and apparent demand for natural gas will hit 205 billion cubic metres, Nur Bekri, head of the National Energy Administration (NEA), said, according to Xinhua.
Electricity consumption will rise to 5.7 trillion kilowatt-hours and coal consumption will be 3.96 billion tonnes. Non-fossil fuels will also make up 13.2 percent of primary energy needs in 2016, up from 12 percent this year, while coal will fall to less than 62.6 percent from 64.4 percent, he said. Natural gas will account for 6.2 percent, while non-fossil fuels including nuclear and renewables will account for 35.7 percent.
Renewable power will account for 1.7 trillion kwh in 2016, with more than 20 gigawatts of wind and 15 GW of photovoltaic solar capacity being added. Overall growth in energy consumption this year was its lowest since 1998, at 0.9 percent, he added. This year, China will have imported 330 million tonnes (6.6 million bpd) of oil and 60 bcm of natural gas. Installed energy capacity will have reached 1.47 billion kilowatts, up 7.5 percent.
In principle, China will stop approving coal mining projects for three years starting in March, and aims to close more than 1,000 mines that have “lagged behind,” Xinhua cited Nur Bekri as saying. Crude oil production is expected to rise to 220 million tonnes (4.4 million bpd), even as global prices near 11-year lows. Natural gas production, including shale gas and coal-bed methane, is expected to rise to 140 bcm, he said.
(1 tonne of crude oil=7.3 barrels)