The Ministry of Natural Resources also revealed that the country has enough oil to last for at least 18 years
China has enough coal in the ground to last for the next five decades, while its crude oil reserves are sufficient for at least 18 years at current rates of production, the latest data released by the Ministry of Natural Resources shows.
The deposits of fossil fuels are expected to stretch well beyond China’s 2030 deadline to achieve peak carbon emissions, while its reserves of coal are enough to take the nation past its goal of carbon neutrality by 2060.
While China’s consumption of coal is mostly met by domestic production that amounts to four billion tons of coal per year, its purchases of crude oil greatly exceed output in the country. China is the world’s leading oil importer.
According to the ministry, the nation’s coal reserves stood at around 208 billion tons in 2021, up 28% from the prior year’s level, while outlays on exploration rose 10% to 1.3 billion yuan ($184 million).
Meanwhile, oil reserves edged up 2.8% to 3.7 billion tons, which is expected to be enough to get Chinese drillers through most of the next two decades, assuming stable output of about 200 million tons per year.
For natural gas, reserves were a touch higher at 6,339 billion cubic meters, which is enough for the next three decades.
Energy-hungry China still heavily relies on imports for most of its oil and much of its gas.
According to the ministry, investments in exploration over the past year grew by 13% to 80 billion yuan ($11.3 billion). Breakthroughs were made in finding new deposits in Sichuan, Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia and the Bohai Bay.
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