Despite efforts to reduce air pollution, China approved the construction of 15 new major coal mines with 101.3 million metric tons annual production capacity last year, Reuters reports.
This is six times more than in 2012 and equal to 10 percent of annual US usage, the news agency reports.
The list, compiled by Reuters, only covers large-scale mines approved by China’s National Development and Reform Commission. Coal mines producing less than 1.2 million metric tons annually can seek approval from local governments and several of these smaller projects were also OKed in 2013.
The US Department of Commerce forecasts China’s clean-tech market will triple to $555 billion by 2020. This could be a boon to US firms like clean-energy company Fuel Tech, green design engineer WS Atkins and others that are hiring more staff and pursuing Chinese contracts, Reuters says.