With firm confidence, high spirit, determination and inspiration for progress, promote comprehensive implementation of all decisions and arrangements of the Meeting of Central Government on Economy through good achievement of environmental protection
Mr. Zhou Shengxian, Minister and General Secretary of the Party Group of Ministry of Environmental Protection chaired the 24th Party Group meeting in 2008 in the morning of December 11 to convey the spirit of the Meeting of Central Government on Economy and discussed and arranged 8 measures environmental protection department is going to carry out in the near future.
First of all, Minister Zhou conveyed the important speeches of Hu Jintao, General Secretary of CCCPC and Premier Wen Jiabao about doing well economic work in 2009 at the Meeting. Minister Zhou said, international economic situation has gone into a precipitous decline since the second half of 2008 with evident increase of economic difficulties in China. Showing great foresight and making a correct assessment of the situation, CCCPC and the State Council identify in time expanding domestic demand and keeping steady economic growth as the economic task in 2009. The Chinese Government will speed up the shift of development mode and structural adjustment; improve the capacity in sustainable development; deepen the reform and opening up; enhance the vigour and vitality in economic & social development; strengthen social development and accelerate the addressing of hard and hot issues in relation to public interests; and facilitate fast and sound economic and social development. He stressed that environmental protection departments across China should unify our thoughts to the decision and arrangements of the central government, and carry out the spirit of 17th National Congress of CPC and the 3rd Plenary Meeting of the 17th CCCPC in an all round way. Guided by Deng Xiaoping Theory and the important thought of the “Three Representatives”, we must carry out the scientific outlook on development; analyze new issues, challenges and tasks confronting environmental protection; and have firm confidence with high spirit. According to the requirement of the outlook on scientific development, we are determined to make progress and exert ourselves; spare no efforts in promoting each task centering on emission reduction and addressing striking environmental problems threatening public health and affecting sustainable development; create a new situation in environmental protection; make more efforts in facilitating economic growth in 2009; speed up the shift of development mode and restructuring; deepen the reform in key fields and links; more open to the outside world and make greater contributions to expand domestic demand and maintain steady and fast economic growth.
Based on real situation of environmental protection, Minister Zhou Shengxian puts forward the following 8 measures that environmental protection departments should carry out now:
I. Firmly enhance emission reduction work and ensure the achievement of the emission reduction targets during the “11th Five-Year Plan” period
Emission reduction is a binding target during the “11th Five-Year Plan” period, a central task for environmental protection and a lever that drives the shift of economic growth mode. Taking expansion of domestic demand as a fundamental approach to ensure economic growth, environmental protection developments should take the enhancement of emission reduction as a focus on promoting the transformation of economic growth mode and restructuring and make all its efforts in achieving the task set out in the “11th Five-Year Plan”. We must adhere firmly to our targets and carry out all measures specified in the Program of the State Council on Comprehensive Energy Saving and Emission Reduction in an all round way. We will continue doing well the following work: development of such projects as sewage treatment plants and sulfur removal in coal-fueled power plants; focus on effective operation of pollution control facilities and emission reduction projects; enhancement of emission reduction target responsibility system; stepping up the supervision, inspection and administrative law enforcement on emission reduction; urging local authorities and enterprises to accelerate lagging behind productivity; strengthening the supervision & management on key pollution sources; urging enterprises to develop and improve various pollution treatment facilities as soon as possible and ensure the achievement of the emission reduction target for key pollutants during the “11th Five-Year Plan” period.
II. Stand unswervingly to strengthen EIA approval service and exert all our energy to facilitate economic growth
Environmental protection must help and facilitate the scientific development. The review and approval of environment impact assessment must be strict in the enhancement of emission reduction. Environmental protection development should be the vanguard for the expansion of domestic demand and promotion of steady and sound economic growth and provide good service for economic growth and social development. To this end, we will strengthen our service on the review & approval of EIA; firmly honor the following seven commitments “convenient with high efficiency, open and transparent, subject to public supervision, honest and self-disciplined, fair & justice, strict in approval, and intensified check & acceptance”. For those projects conducive to expanding domestic demand such as the one meeting environmental access conditions, welfare projects, infrastructure, development of eco environment as well as post-disaster reconstruction in particular national key projects, we should open a “Green passage” for EIA review & approval, facilitate fast approval and operation of the projects and make our due contribution to the development of physical economy.
III. Firmly carry out strict environment access system and curb rapid growth of the development projects with “high energy consumption, heavy pollution and resource oriented” and industries with excessive productivity
We will treat well the relations between service and inspection, current and long-term, efficiency and quality, macro and micro perspective. With strict environmental access, we will facilitate the shift of economic growth mode and restructuring. In cooperation with relevant developments, we will issue and improve the catalogue on the projects with “high consumption of energy and pollution” or with excessive productivity which are subject to restricted development; strengthen macro guidance, make more efforts in promoting clean production and developing circular economy; facilitate the transformation of traditional industry into low carbon economy; encourage a group of key projects able to drive technological progress and facilitate structural and layout adjustment. In addition, we will strictly check if construction projects meet environmental protection access conditions and stop the resumption of any phased out projects in the name of technical reform or new investment.
IV. Firmly grasp the good opportunity of huge national investment in infrastructure and strengthen eco environmental protection and build the capacity in environmental management infrastructure
Eco environmental protection is an important measure of the central government to expand domestic demand and maintain steady economic growth. We will grasp good opportunities; correctly understand the relation between the cycle of economic growth and stability in environmental investment; continuously increase the investment in environmental protection; strengthen the prevention and control of water, air and soil pollution in key river basins, lakes and coastal sea waters. We will take it as top priority to ensure public drinking water safety; speed up the implementation of the planning for the prevention and control of water pollution in key river basins and let overloaded rivers, lakes and seas to restore their eco environment. In addition, we will accelerate the construction of such environmental infrastructure as urban sewage treatment plants and supporting pipelines, desulphurization device of coal-fueled generation sets and on-line monitoring system for key pollution sources; increase the input in such areas as environmental monitoring, supervision, information, science & technology, publicity and education and vigorously strengthen the capacity in environmental management.
V. Firmly intensify rural environmental protection and make more efforts in environmental quality
Rural environmental protection is an important component of both the building of socialist new countryside in China and environmental protection. Guided by the decision of the 17th National Congress of CCCPC and the 3rd Plenary Session of 17th CCCPC, we will materialize the spirit of National Tele-conference on Rural Environmental Protection in an all round way; strictly control industrial pollution in rural areas and prevent the movement of pollution to rural areas. We will identify the protected areas for rural concentrated drinking water source in a scientific way, eliminate according to law all pollutant discharge outlets within the protected areas for drinking water sources and make every effort to guarantee the safety of rural drinking water. We will carry out demonstration projects on the prevention and control of soil pollution and the pollution from livestock farms; and control & reduce non-point pollution. In addition, we will make more efforts in facilitating comprehensive environmental control in villages and towns; implement well the policy of “employing award to facilitate treatment and replace subsidy” and find effective solutions to the striking issues seriously threatening public health, thus leading to dramatic improvement of environmental quality in villages and towns.
VI. Firmly strengthen environmental management and facilitate coordination between economic growth and environmental protection
Environmental management is an effective tool to carry out the decision and arrangements of the central government and ensure fast and sound economic development. We will continuously emancipate our minds with brave innovation; strengthen the role of such tools as environmental legal system, planning, standards, monitoring, supervision, publicity and education in environmental management; improve mechanism and system; strengthen macro comprehensive decision making and routine supervision; actively coordinate relevant ministries and commissions of central governments to have unified action and efforts; jointly facilitate the implementation of all policies on environmental protection; actively guide and urge local governments and environmental protection developments to materialize each measure for environmental protection.
VII. Firmly accelerate the improvement of environmental economic policy and establish a long-term effective mechanism for environmental protection
We will develop sound environmental economic policies. The achievement of high-degree integration of environmental protection and economic development during the whole reproduction process is an important measure for enhancing and improving macro regulation, speeding up the shift of development mode and promoting strategic adjustment of economic structure. We will give full play to the important role of economic and market instruments in environmental protection; strengthen the coordination of the macro policy developed by relevant developments; develop and improve such systems as green credit, green insurance, green taxation, green procurement and green trade; continuously improve pricing and charging policy; extend and improve eco compensation mechanism; issue environmental economic policies relevant to economic development at appropriate time; gradually develop a comprehensive & systematic environment economic policy system supporting sound & fast economic growth and establish a complete long-term effective mechanism conducive to environmental protection.
VIII. Firmly enhance environmental supervision and law enforcement, safeguard public environmental right and interests
Full enforcement of environmental laws and regulations and supervision on the implementation are necessary guarantee for practical outcomes of each arrangement of and measure for environmental protection. We will deeply carry out the outlook on scientific development and adhere to the principle of people first. Focusing on addressing the pre-eminent environmental problems threatening public health and affecting sustainable development, we will continue our special environmental protection campaigns; mainly supervise & manage urban sewage and garbage treatment facilities as well as such industries as chemicals, pulp & paper making, power, iron & steel; and sternly crack down environmental infringements threatening the safety of drinking water. We will actively carry out follow-up supervision work on the enterprise on the black list of environmental pollution, major environmental accidents and areas with serious environmental infringements and improve the follow-up supervision mechanism.
Vice ministers and minister-level leaders of MEP Mr. Zhang Lijun, Wu Xiaoqing, Zhou Jian and Fu Wenjuan took part in the meeting and made a speech. They said they firmly support the key decisions and arrangements of the Meeting of the Central Government on Economy and presented their own views and suggestions on the implementation by environmental protection developments.
(This English version is for your reference only.In case any discrepancy exists between the Chinese and English context, the Chinese version shall prevail.)