China's coal-rich province of Shanxi extracted 1.71 billion cubic meters of coalbed methane in the first two months of this year, accounting for approximately 82.6 percent of the country's total, according to the provincial statistics bureau.
"Last year, the company put more than 350 coalbed methane wells into operation. The annual production capacity of the company's coalbed methane fields has so far reached 2.1 billion cubic meters," said Hu Qiujia, manager of PetroChina Huabei Oilfield's Shanxi coalbed methane branch.
The utilization of coalbed methane, which is a byproduct of coal, can help reduce risks in mining, cut greenhouse gas emissions and ease gas shortages.
Shanxi is one of the Chinese regions abundant in coalbed methane resources. It has an estimated reserve of 8.31 trillion cubic meters of coalbed methane up to 2,000 meters below ground, accounting for about one-third of the country's total.
By 2025, Shanxi aims to have extracted 20 billion to 25 billion cubic meters of coalbed methane, according to the province's 14th five-year development plan for 2021 to 2025.