Farmers Freeze as Coal Cleanup Campaign Backfires
China’s environmental ministry is taking its foot off the accelerator of a campaign to stop rural households from burning coal, after a shortage of natural gas and poor planning left thousands shivering in freezing temperatures.
The Ministry of Environmental Protection, in an urgent letter to 28 northern cities on Monday, said residents could continue using coal to power their winter heating systems or use other means such as burning firewood to keep warm in places where the transition to natural gas or electricity hasn’t been completed.
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