China / Society

National environment watchdog delegates more assessment approval power to provincial authorities

By ZHENG JINRAN ( Updated: 2015-03-22 15:31

The national environment watchdog has transferred more environment impact assessment power to the provincial environment authority, but will continue to put reins on the projects review to control the pollution, as its announcement said.

No projects are allowed to start construction until they pass the environmental impact assessment (EIA). For the major projects, the Ministry of Environmental Protection has the EIA approval power, a way to prevent the pollution from the source.

Seven more types of projects do not have to get the approval from the ministry but from the provincial environmental protection authorities. They are thermal power stations fueled by coals, power plants fueled by heat, iron and steel, nonferrous metal smelting, expressways, vehicle production and large theme parks.

The ministry will implement supporting policies and regulations to help and guarantee the provincial bureaus conduct the reviews well, said Cheng Lifeng, head of the environmental impact review bureau of the ministry on Thursday.

In December, 2013, the ministry has already transferred 25 assessment approval power to provincial authorities.

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