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China launches $372 bln pollution reduction drive

By Du Liya (Global Times)

08:09, August 28, 2012

The Chinese government announced on Sunday that it will spend 2.36 trillion yuan ($372 billion) on energy conservation and emission reduction during the country's 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-15).

The State Council recently approved the plan, which set a goal of cutting pollution emissions by 8 to 10 percent by 2015 through 10 major projects in energy saving renovation, technology promotion, water recycling and river pollution treatment, according to a report released Sunday on the website of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).

The government also plans to reduce energy consumption per unit of GDP by 16 percent, and reduce energy consumption per unit of industrial output by 21 percent.

"The new policy can promote the development of new energy through financial support and creating good opportunities for energy enterprises through preferential measures," said Pang Jun, professor at the School of Environment and Natural Resources at the Renmin University of China.

"However, apart from the government's financial support, the ability to absorb capital from local enterprises and private investors is significant for the long-term development of environmental protection companies," Pang said.

Wu Changhua, director at the Climate Group (China), said that the government has to continue working on specific measures on the details of financial subsidies, technology direction and taxation support, which can fully promote energy conservation and pollution reduction nationwide.

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