BEIJING, Aug. 25 (Xinhua) -- China's coal industry has seen notable development in the past 70 years, with output surging and structure improving, data showed.
Coal output reached 3.68 billion tonnes in 2018, 115 times of only 32 million tonnes 70 years ago, according to Huang Yuzhi, head of the National Coal Mine Safety Administration.
As China improves coal mine efficiency and cuts outdated capacity, the number of coal mines saw a significant decrease to about 5,700 in 2019 compared with about 82,000 in 1997, he said.
Mining equipment has evolved rapidly during the years, with automation helping reduce coal mine accidents.
Coal had been an important energy source that has supported China's industrial growth over the past decades. As the country pushes green development and copes with climate change, authorities have launched initiatives to promote clean energy use and cut over-reliance on coal.