LEAVING THE LAND
New China Cities: Shoddy Homes, Broken Hope
By IAN JOHNSON
China's government-led urbanization, meant to solve one problem, may be creating a new set of troubles that could plague Chinese cities for generations.
Leaving the Land
By IAN JOHNSON
A 12-year plan to move hundreds of millions of rural residents into cities is intended to spur economic growth, but could have unintended consequences, skeptics warn.
Chinese residents have turned to the microblogging site Weibo to express their feelings on the government’s efforts to drastically expand the urban population.
China orders firms to curb pollution
The Chinese government has ordered firms in heavy-polluting industries to cut emissions by 30% by 2017.Under the new rules companies will be legally obliged to improve their pollution control equipment and will be penalised for excess emissions.
Analysts said enforcement of the targets was likely to fall to local governments.
China emits more carbon dioxide than any other nation, and has seen scores of environmental protests.
The announcement did not specify which industries would be affected by the new emissions rules.
However, earlier this year ministers hinted that industries such as iron, steel, petrochemicals and cement would face new targets.
Protests The State Council announced the emissions targets as part of a document that approved 10 measures for tackling environmental problems, including:
- Curbing the growth of energy-consuming industries like steel, cement, aluminium, and glass
- Refusing permission for new industrial projects if they failed to meet required standards
- Strengthening enforcement of the current penalties regime
In 2007, residents of Xiamen staged a series of protests against the construction of a chemical factory in the area and forced the local government to back down.
And anger over air pollution in Beijing, expressed mainly in online forums, led the local government to change the way in which it monitored pollution levels.
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