• Thu
  • Jul 31, 2014
  • Updated: 5:49am
NewsChina
AIR POLLUTION

China announces 10b yuan air pollution fund

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 13 February, 2014, 10:34am
UPDATED : Thursday, 13 February, 2014, 11:37pm

China’s cabinet has announced that 10 billion yuan (HK$12.7 billion) has been set aside this year to reward cities and regions that make significant progress in controlling air pollution, highlighting how the issue has become a priority for the leadership.

The fund will be set up to reward rather than offer subsidies for the prevention and control of air pollution in the key areas, according to a statement released after a Wednesday meeting of the State Council led by Premier Li Keqiang. It said controlling pollutants such as particulate matter in the air should be a key task.

Pollution is a rising concern for China’s stability-obsessed leaders, keen to douse potential unrest as affluent city dwellers turn against a growth-at-all-costs economic model that has tainted much of the country’s air, water and soil.

The statement said the consumption of coal should be controlled and also called for increased efforts to promote high-quality petrol for vehicles, energy saving in construction and the use of environmentally friendly boilers.

The government is eager to bring about a visible improvement in China’s bad air, which has caused discontent among its citizens and tarnished the country’s image abroad.

China’s smog has brought some Chinese cities to a near standstill, caused flight delays and forced schools to shut.

Beijing was hit by severe levels of pollution at least once every week, according to the 2012 Blue Paper for World Cities report. That was on top of a significant level of air pollution covering the capital for 189 days in 2013, according to city’s Environmental Protection Bureau.

While heavily polluting industries have emissions standards, they are not necessarily enforced, and local governments often still favour pollution-intensive projects that can generate growth, which is what their performance is judged on.

Overall the government has pledged to spend over 3 trillion yuan ($494.85 billion) to tackle the problem, creating a growing market for companies that can help boost energy efficiency and lower emissions.

Beijing will also shut 300 polluting factories this year and publish a list of industrial projects to be halted or suspended by the end of April, state news agency Xinhua said, citing a document detailing the capital’s action plan to 2017 to clean up its air. Energy and pollution-intensive projects such as steel and cement are not to be approved on principle, it said.

Pollution campaigners have cautioned that the capital’s pollution can’t just be tackled on a city-wide basis, because much of Beijing’s pollution wafts in from the surrounding regions.

Additional reporting by Reuters

Watch: Beijing's air pollution level 'off the charts'

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DavidMuscat
With the Government now confirming this issue at the President and Prime Minister Level and also confirming through its Technical and Financial Committees this is extremely good news. We had agreed just four months ago approval of Applied Biofuels in its patented technology to convert organic waste (from our municipal solid waste (MSW). sewage sludge, farming, animal manures, or in commerce/industrial areas) to make biofuels for transport in the PRC. This then is very good news for PRC. It cures our all MSW issues in our citiyurban areas at long last at a fraction of the stupidity of costs for those hideous incinerator plants that we abhor being proposed in Beijing Shanghai Pudong etc,. which emit huge carcinogen/cancers to people and which are known to kill millions of people prematurely. Also with the clean burning biofuels we make from our waste will meet 50+% of fuel we need for road transport and it will reduce traffic smog at a stroke. Another benefit - the PRC will avoid importing its some of its massive amounts of oil. It its projected oil import will be $500 billion in 2020, this proposal will reduce this by a massive $300 billion. We need to address Chinese crude oil imports as soon as possible as the growth in demand is for domestic used by cars and lorries projected to reach 180 million by 2020. We must make our own Biofuels as it will also clean up the ground smog issue. Well done Mr President and Premier the Applied Biofuels Investment is well woth having here.
hongkiejj@malaysiaboleh
knowing perfectly well parts and pieces of the billions will be divided amongst the corrupted ppl, china should just appoint a proven company like in Norway or maybe in Canada to form a committee to deal with the pollution along with the selected agency in china. there is no shame in this frankly. afterall, the folks affected are your own ppl
dunndavid
You're certainly right that China needs foreign involvement. China needs to sell some power companies to foreigners and have them run them the companies like they do in their home countries, including meeting foreign levels of pollution. Similarly China needs to disband at least some of their provincial EPA and hand them over to foreign contractors, as Indonesia did some years ago with their hopelessly corrupt customs services. These are similar moves would be deeply embarrassing for China, yet China needs to make a choice. Admit that the country needs help or continue on the path of environmental ruin.
ido.yahalomi
I know a great solution for countries and cities(municipalities) call GreenOn.
Contact me if you want more details.
DinGao
Perhaps HK should consider doubling it for closely monitored projects In Shenzen and other PRC areas most polluting HK.
Beaker
Their system is set up for corruption. Reward for improving air quality. So they continue to fake air pollution indices (compare Chinese vs. the US Embassy and Consulate data) to grab the rewards, which then 5% gets pocketed by corrupt Commies. Either there is already a kickback scheme to the ones who came up with this scheme, or there will be. They are not that stupid to think that this will not happen.
newgalileo
Well, at least the goodwill is there...
 
 
 
 
 

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