Wen calls for reduction in pollution
Updated: 2007-05-08 07:02
BEIJING, May 7 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has urged more curbs on
industries that consume more energy and release more pollutants in a bid to
ensure a healthy and fast economic growth. A copy
of the full speech was made available to Xinhua Monday.
Wen said that the economy
could hardly be sustainable if China failed to adjust the economic structure,
transform the (extensive) growth mode, and reduce energy consumption.
are left with no choice but to develop in an economical, clean and safe way,"
the premier said in a speech addressed to the national working teleconference on
energy saving and pollutants reduction late April.
Wen noted the
nation will tighten land use and credit supply and set stricter market access
and environmental standards for new projects amid efforts to rein in the rapid
expansion of energy-gorging industries including power, steel, oil refinery,
chemicals, construction materials, and metals.
The premier said the six
sectors that consume 70 percent of energy for industry and release the same
percentage of sulfur dioxide grew 20.6 percent in the first quarter, 6.6
percentage points higher than the same period last year.
continue to curb the energy-guzzlers by further adjusting exports rebates,
levying more exports tariff, and reducing exports quotas," he said.
said China will cancel preferential policies on the industries like lower tax,
electricity and land costs.
"Outmoded production facilities must be
eliminated at a faster pace and how this policy is implemented by local
governments and companies will be open to the public and subject to social
supervision," he said.
Wen added that China will push forward reforms in
the pricing of natural gas, water and other resources, raise the tax levied on
pollutant discharge, establish a "polluter pays" system and severely punish
those who violate the environmental protection laws.
"The ten nationwide energy saving
programs, such as developing oil alternatives, upgrading coal-fired boilers and
saving energy indoors, will save China 240 million tons of coal equivalent
during the 2006-10 period, including 50 million tons this year," he said.
Smoke billows from a factory on the outskirts
of Shenyang, northeast China's Liaoning province, May 4, 2007.
He said the government will also introduce more incentives to encourage
companies to use more energy efficient production facilities and techniques.
"This year is crucial for China in its efforts to meet the energy saving
and pollutants emission reduction target set for the 2006-10 period," said Wen.
The Chinese government has set a goal of reducing energy consumption per
unit of gross domestic product by 20 percent by 2010, while pollutant discharge
should drop by 10 percent.
Energy consumption, however, fell only 1.23
percent last year, well short of the annual goal of four percent.
also said to meet the target is an urgent demand of global climate change and
the coal-dependant China should bear the responsibility to reduce pollutant
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