Municipal Natural Gas Infrastructure Development Project

China partners with private companies to provide its cities with natural gas. The “Municipal Natural Gas Infrastructure Development Project” supplied five major metropolitan areas with compressed natural gas, including for powering public transportation. This project has reduced pollution, including emission of greenhouse gases, and increased quality of life for urban residents.

Fast facts:

  • More than 2,000 kilometers of additional gas distribution pipeline built

  • 165 compressed natural gas stations built in 36 cities for cities and buses

  • Reduction of 634,000 tons  of carbon dioxide per year

The problem

Air pollution, acid rain, and greenhouse gas emissions threaten people and the environment, in the People’s Republic of China, across Asia and throughout the world. Pollution knows no boundaries. Among other factors, cars fueled by gasoline, along with industrial boilers and furnaces that consume almost half of China’s coal, make up major sources of urban air pollution.


The solution

China aims to substitute polluting fossil fuels like coal, with natural gas by building up its natural gas distribution network. The Asian Development Bank, working with the private-sector company China Gas Holdings, has expanded the natural gas pipeline network, adding distribution infrastructure to more than 100 Chinese cities. The company also built compressed natural gas stations for public transport. Since the project started, the number of natural gas users in China has increased ninefold.

In addition, the bank trained the management of China Gas Holdings in corporate governance – the company has since won several awards for positive corporate governance.

Helping the planet

Natural gas burns far cleaner than petrol or coal, so this project has reduced emissions of air pollutants such as particulates, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and carbon dioxide. This, in turn, has reduced the threat of acid rain, as well as mitigating impending climate change.


Helping people

Reducing air pollution in cities significantly increases the quality of life for urban populations. Providing access to a clean and reliable energy source assures energy security for the generations to come.


Spillover effect

The project has shown tremendous growth and has greatly increased the scale of natural gas use. Successful implementation, including demonstration of the public-private partnership model, has encouraged more municipalities to consider private sector participation for natural gas distribution.




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