China to reduce pulluant discharge by 10%

Updated: 2007-06-04 13:06

Ma Kai, minister in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission, answers a question at a press conference in Beijing on Monday, June 4, 2007. China's national action plan on climate change was released at the press conference. [ciic]
The Chinese government has reiterated its intention to meet strict energy efficiency and pollutant reduction targets, which it failed last year, in an official work plan published here Sunday.

The General Work Plan for Energy Conservation and Pollutant Discharge Reduction shows that China will stick to the original plan of energy saving as well as reducing major pollutant discharges by 10 percent.

Under a five-year plan to 2010, China pledged to cut energy consumption per unit of gross domestic product (GDP) by 20 percent, or four percent each year, but consumption fell by just 1.23 percent last year.

Electricity, steel, nonferrous metals, construction materials, oil processing and chemicals, the six high energy-consuming and highly polluting industries, which account for nearly 70 percent of energy consumption and sulfur dioxide discharges of the entire industrial sector, grew by 20.6 percent in the first quarter of 2007, 6.6 percentage points higher than the same period a year earlier.

The plan criticized government departments for their poor awareness of the importance of energy efficiency and pollutant reduction.

China will reform the mechanism of evaluating local governments and their leaders by including the implementation of energy-saving and emission-reduction tasks into their performances, the plan said, and it asked relevant departments to work out detailed measures for this reform.

Together with Ministry of Finance, the State Environmental Protection Administration and five other authorities, China's top economic planner National Development and Reform Commission has kicked off a campaign to ensure the elimination of high-energy consuming and heavy-polluting industries.

The campaign, aimed at curbing excessive growth of energy consuming and polluting industries, will run until the end of June, focusing on the iron and steel, copper, alumina, cement, power and coking sectors.

Monitors will investigate the local governments' performance in implementing the central government's macro controls on the energy consuming and polluting industries.

China will promote the use of renewable energy resources, such as wind power, solar power, hydro power, methane and terrestrial heat. The country will also establish medium- and long-term outlines on fuel ethanol and bio ethanol, the plan said.

According to the plan, units, branches and bodies of the central government will take the lead of using energy-saving lights and 50 million similar lights will be in use nationwide by 2010.

Meanwhile, the plan makes it compulsory for government departments to purchase highly efficient energy-saving, water-saving and environmental-friendly products in governmental procurement, such as conditioners, computers, printers and displays.

The state will encourage and direct financial institutions to enhance credit support for environment-protection and pollution-reduction projects. The government will also offer preferential tax treatments for such projects.

China will also reform pricing mechanism for resource products, such as refined oil, natural gas and electricity, and restrict the export of high-energy consuming and heavy-polluting products.

China will optimize energy use in high-energy consuming industries, such as steel, non-ferrous metal, petrochemical and cement production, realize energy-saving capacities of 50 million tons of standard coal in 2007 and 240 million tons by 2010.

The country will save 31.5 million tons of standard coal this year and 118 million tons by 2010, and cut sulfur dioxide emissions by 400,000 tons in 2007 and by 2.4 million tons by 2010.

To meet the goals, the government will accelerate the elimination of out-dated production capacities and reduce chemical oxygen demand (COD) by by 620,000 tons this year and by 1.38 million tons by 2010.

To meet the goal, the government has set a list of targets, including:

-- Solid fuel-burning electricity generating capacity will be reduced by 10 million kilowatts this year and 50 million kilowatts by 2010;

-- Iron ore production capacity to lose by 30 million tons this year and 100 million tons by 2010;

-- Steel production to close 35 million tons of capacity this year and 55 million tons by 2010;

-- Electrolytic aluminum production to close 100,000 tons of capacity this year and 650,000 tons by 2010;

-- Iron alloy production capacity to lose 1.2 million tons this year and four million tons by 2010;

-- Calcium carbide production capacity to lose 500,000 tons this year and two million tons by 2010;

-- Coke production capacity of 10 million tons will close this year and 80 million tons by 2010;

-- Cement production capacity to lose 50 million tons this year and 250 million tons by 2010;

-- Glass production capacity of six million weight boxes to be closed this year and 30 million weight boxes by 2010;

-- Papermaking capacity of 2.3 million tons to be closed this year and 6.5 million tons by 2010.

-- Alcohol production capacity to lose 400,000 tons this year and 1.6 million tons by 2010;

-- Monosodium glutamate production capacity of 50,000 tons to be eliminated this year and 200,000 tons by 2010;

-- Citric acid production to close 20,000 tons of capacity this year and 80,000 tons by 2010.

The discharge of sulfur dioxide will drop from 25.49 million tons in 2005 to 22.95 million tons in 2010 while chemical oxygen demand (COD) should drop from 14.14 million tons to 12.73 million tons, under the plan.

Desulfurizition facilities will be incorporated in all new solid fuel-burning electricity plants with total power-generation capacities of 188 million kilowatts and established plants with capacities of 167 million kilowatts, cutting the country's sulfur dioxide emissions by 5.9 million tons annually.

China has so far installed desulfurizition facilities in solid fuel-burning electricity plants with total power-generation capacities of 35 million kilowatts, eliminating 1.23 million tons of sulfur dioxide emissions every year.

Daily urban sewage treatment capacity will rise to 12 million tons this year 45 million tons by 2010 and the daily utilization capacity of recycled water will reach one million tons this year and 6.8 million tons by 2010.

Meanwhile, charges for sulfur dioxide emissions will double from 0.63 yuan to 1.26 yuan per kilogram in three years, while urban sewage treatment fees of no more than 0.8 yuan per ton will be implemented and rubbish treatment fees will be raised.

The government will ensure the urban sewage treatment rate will reach 70 percent, the comprehensive use of industrial solid waste 60 percent, and water consumption per unit of industrial net profit will drop by 30 percent.

The daily seawater desalination capacity will increase by 900,000 cubic meters and the use of water from mining shafts will reach 2.6 billion cubic meters by 2010; the targets will be 70,000 cubic meters and 500 million cubic meters respectively in 2007.

The plan requires departments and local governments to prioritize the tasks and use economic, legal and administrative methods to curb excessive growth of high-energy consuming and heavy-polluting industries.

Meanwhile, efforts must be made to adjust industrial structure, improve technology, expand spending and strengthen monitoring.

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