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Xinjiang vows to quell underground coal fires
(China Daily)
Updated: 2004-11-03 10:11

The Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region pledged to extinguish underground fires in all its 35 coalfield fire areas by 2020, said the Xinjiang Regional Coalfield Fire Fighting Project Office.

Surveys conducted by the office between 1995-97 showed 35 coalfield fires which have so far resulted in losses of 3.1 billion tons of coal in a vast area of 8.26 million square metres.

The spontaneous-ignition flames in 33 fiery coalfield regions - two have already been put out - are devouring approximately 8 million tons of coal a year, the office said.

The Liuhuanggou coalfield fire in Xinjiang has been extinguished after four years of efforts costing 98.72 million yuan (US$12 million).

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