Holiday Coal

With southern and central China still in the grip of its most severe winter since 1954, more snow and ice on the way and relief efforts struggling to keep up with the scale of the relief work, Beijing says it will keep coal mines working over lunar New Year.

Three quarters of China’s 862 biggest mines will scrap their customary holiday. The aim is to run at 85% of normal production to ease the widespread power shortages that have left millions shivering in the dark and shuttered factories and mills.

However, small mines that are being closed under a multiyear campaign to reduce mine accidents, will not be allowed to reopen despite the coal shortages.

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