Through 20 years of relentless effort, China has achieved a massive reduction in the world's largest population living in absolute poverty. Based on the original poverty line (the annual per-capita income ranged from 71.68 to 127.88 dollars), the number of people living in poverty was reduced to 14.97 million in 2007, while based on the new line (the annual per-capita income is 374.67 dollars), the population has been reduced from 122.38 million in 2010 to 82.49 million in 2013. According to the international poverty line (the per-capita daily consumption expenditure is lower than 1 dollar), the population has been reduced from 499 million in 1990 to 86.4 million in 2010, making a great contribution to the fulfillment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG).
China also faces an enormous problem of "ecological poverty", referring to people who live in a fragile ecological environment with strained natural conditions and inadequate natural resources to meet the demands placed on them. It is estimated that the national population living in ecological poverty amounts to 200 million, twice as many as those currently living in income poverty.
People who suffer from smog pollution can also be defined as a population experiencing "pollution poverty". This group might be far removed from the income poverty population, but they have been deprived of clean air. This new "pollution poverty" population is estimated to account for between 1/4 and 1/3 of the national urban population.
This is an invisible war that jeopardizes human health both directly and indirectly. Prime Minister Li Keqiang has therefore declared war on pollution and this is a political promise of the Chinese government. He has announced specific targets and a plan of action: we will implement air pollution prevention by focusing on the large cities and regions with frequent smog, and setting the treatment of PM 2.5 and PM 10 as the key priority. To be more specific, we will get rid of 50,000 small coal-fired power stations, and through a program of renovation we will promote the desulfurization of 15 million KW of coal-fired power plant, the denitration of 130 million KW, and the dedusting of 180 million KW.
This is the strictest, and most rigorous pollution treatment program in the world, and the largest in scale. This "war" on pollution also involves the largest population. In this sense, the declaration of war on pollution represents China's "green contribution" - one which will definitely make a substantial contribution to the wider world.
Read the Chinese version: 中国对世界的‘绿色贡献’; Source: People's Daily ; Author:Hu Angang