China's power play

Beijing has made a strong start in establishing a lower-carbon economy, but it's facing some formidable obstacles on the path to expanding its renewable energy industry.

Step off an aircraft in Datong, the city at the heart of the coal belt in north China’s Shanxi province, and it is not long before the eyes sting and the throat is dry from the very noticeable levels of coal dust in the air. But drive an hour or so north towards Qahar in neighbouring Inner Mongolia and the horizon is dominated by hulking wind turbines, part of a network that is rapidly becoming one of the biggest in the world.

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