Eni agrees LNG, gas deal with Zhejiang Energy as China switches to cleaner fuels

MILAN, March 30 (Reuters) - Italy’s Eni has agreed a long term liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply agreement with Zhejiang Energy as China seeks ways to cut carbon emissions by encouraging a switch from the use of polluting coal to gas to generate electricity.

On Monday a study showed China generated 53% of the world’s total coal-fired power in 2020, nine percentage points more than five years earlier.

China has promised to reduce its dependence on coal and bring emissions of climate-warming greenhouse gas to a peak before 2030 and become “carbon neutral” by 2060.

Besides building out renewable energy capacity, Beijing has ambitious plans to build new natural gas storage and is increasing LNG imports.

Eni said on Tuesday under the agreement the two groups would develop long term LNG supply agreements and team up in gas and LNG projects.

Eni this year became the latest energy group to increase its climate ambition with a promise to be carbon neutral by 2050.

Its traditional oil and gas production will rise 4% per year but oil production will peak in 2025 and gas is expected to be some 90% of the portfolio in 2050. (Reporting by Stephen Jewkes, editing by Louise Heavens)