As of August 5, of all the 541 power plants in China, 219 have less than 7 days worth of coal inventory. Power shortages have occurred in provinces such as Shangxi, Henan, Hunan and Liaoning where local authorities have implemented planned blackouts. On July 29, the shortage hit 10.22 million Kilowatts in Shandong Province, close to one-third of the power requirement in the province.
The power shortage was attributed to lack of quality coal, which has forced the shutdown of some major power plants.
Industry experts fear that the shortage will spread to more provinces and regions including Jiangsu, Fujian, Hubei and Jiangxi and Chongqing. 70% of the power consumed in Beijing depends on power plants outside the Beijing region. Two of them, Shalingzi and Wangtan Power Plants have their coal inventory hovering at around a 2 day level of reserves.
Source: Xinhua, August 6, 2008