China, Technology, Innovation and the Environment: Energy consuming industries developing too fast
Industries with high energy consumption and emissions are developing too fast in China, along with the quick economic growth, the Chinese State Council, or Cabinet, warned on recently.
The traditional industry structure remained unchanged, while the service sector and high-tech manufacturing weighting fell in the national economy, State Councilors heard at a meeting focusing on energy saving and emission reduction, chaired by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao.
Meeting the energy saving and emission reduction targets set in the 11th Five-Year Plan (2006-2010) remained an arduous task, they agreed.
With performances in conserving energy and reducing pollutant emissions introduced into administrative evaluation, those who fail to meet the goals are to be put under public scrutiny.
Industries with high energy consumption and pollution should be resolutely curbed, and the land use, energy consumption and environment impact assessment should be considered in approving new projects, the State Council warned.
This year should see the closure of small thermal power plants with a generation capacity of 13 million kilowatts. Outdated production capacity in cement, aluminum electrolysis, paper-making, iron and steel industries should be eliminated.
The Chinese government will fund key environment protection projects, including the construction of the sewage treatment facility network.
Environment-friendly construction materials should make up more than 80 percent of projects by the end of 2008.
China reported a drop in both sulfur dioxide emissions and carbon oxygen demand, a measure of water pollution, in 2007.
Last year, China saw a 3.27 percent year-on-year drop in energy consumption for each 10,000 yuan of GDP, Premier Wen Jiabao said in his government work report to the First Session of the 11th National People’s Congress.
However, the Chinese government has admitted the difficulty of hitting the targets to cut China’s total energy consumption by about 20 percent and emissions of major pollutants by 10 percent by the year 2010, a goal the government set in 2006.