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China’s Love-Hate Relationship With Coal

If you’re confused about China’s stance on the use of coal, well, you’re definitely not alone. This week, China went on a global coal buying binge in a frantic effort to put a stop to rolling blackouts that have afflicted millions of residents, factories, and businesses in at least nine provinces over the past several weeks.

But just two weeks earlier, President Xi Jinping told everyone at the United Nations General Assembly that Beijing planned to phase out the use of dirty fuels as part of an ambitious effort to reach peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030. And the President also said his government would halt the building of new coal-fired power plants abroad.

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