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May 6, 2010

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Home » Metro » Environment

Han vows all-out bid to put curb on pollution

SHANGHAI would strengthen efforts to eliminate outdated production capacity and stop approving expansion projects that fail to pass environmental assessments in a bid to meet this year's goal to reduce emissions and energy consumption, Mayor Han Zheng said yesterday.

Han reiterated the city's goal to reduce the equivalent of 800,000 tons of standard coal this year with the eventual aim of cutting the standard coal equivalent by as much as 1 million tons.

The city government will strictly control the number of new projects with high energy consumption and curb excessive growth of the industries with high emissions.

Projects not in line with energy-efficient standards will not be approved.

"It is austere to achieve 2010 targets to reduce emissions and save energy," Han said. "We have to rigorously stick to this goal and ensure the implementation of rules."

High demand

Shanghai set a goal in March to cut energy consumption per 10,000 yuan (US$1,464) of gross domestic product by at least 3.6 percent this year.

Although not a big target, the city is faced with high energy demands this year from the 2010 World Expo.

Steel mills and petrochemical plants, back in production amid the economic recovery, will require more energy.

Energy consumption this year is estimated to increase by as much as 7 million tons.

That included 1 million tons consumed by the Expo transportation system and 4 million tons by new projects in the steel and petrochemical industries, Vice Mayor Yang Xiong said earlier.

To achieve the emissions goal, the city government has worked out a guideline involving nearly 200 projects in key areas including transportation and construction.

Fines imminent

Han pledged to increase financial support to encourage the use of renewable and clean energy and to push forward industrial reformation toward energy efficiency.

The city will accelerate the development and application of low-carbon techniques and continue to promote energy-saving products.

Shanghai will soon announce policies enabling it to fine companies that violate environmental rules.

Last year, Shanghai reduced energy use by 6.17 percent per 10,000 yuan of GDP, beating a 3.6-percent target set at the start of the year.

This result came after the government strengthened emissions controls and industrial demand slowed.

The emission of chemical oxygen demand was reduced by 8.74 percent to 243,400 tons and air-polluting sulfur dioxide levels were cut by 15.05 percent to 379,000 tons.

Thus Shanghai met 2010 goals to cut water and air pollution a year early.


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