Sunday, August 11, 2013

China to spend more to tackle dire pollution

Reuters: China plans to accelerate investment in technology to save energy and tackle the dire pollution blamed for a series of health crises that have generated widespread public anger. The government has been increasingly alarmed by social unrest caused by environmental disasters and threats to public health, often the result of the country's breakneck industrial expansion and mass migration to new cities.

Smog over northern cities in January generated a public outcry, as did the discovery in March of thousands of rotting pig carcasses in a river that supplies Shanghai's water. The country's cabinet, the State Council, said on Sunday that environmental protection would be elevated to a "pillar industry" that would receive government support in the form of tax breaks and subsidies.

China is already investing 2.3 trillion yuan ($375 billion) in energy savings and emissions reduction in the five years through 2015, state media have said. The State Council said the new plan would ensure the environmental protection industry grows by 15 percent annually, generating turnover of 4.5 trillion yuan ($735 billion) by 2015...

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