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China solicits opinions on harsher environment law

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-08-01 21:40

BEIJING - China on Thursday began soliciting public opinions on a draft amendment to the environmental protection law that proposes harsher punishments for polluters.

Public opinions were sought after the draft amendment was tabled for the first reading in August 2012. Based on suggestions collected, the National People's Congress (NPC) Law Committee revised it, and the revised version was submitted to the NPC Standing Committee for the second reading in June.

The version for the second reading for the first time specifies that protecting the environment is a basic state policy.

It also stipulates harsher punishments for polluters. For example, if polluting companies or organizations that have been fined fail to correct their malpractices by the provided deadline, they will be forced to pay the amount of the initial fine for every day past the deadline that the mistakes or problems have not been fixed.

The draft amendment was published on the NPC's website,, and opinions can also be mailed to the NPC Law Committee.

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