China to Toughen Environment Law, Hold Polluters Liable
March 9, 2014 6:38 PM EST
China will toughen its environmental protection laws to target polluters, according to a high-level policy report released on Sunday, paving the way for possibly unlimited penalties for polluting and the suspension or shutdown of polluters.
China Pollution Levels: Chinese
The revised law would hold "polluters accountable for the damage they cause and having them compensate for it," said the report, delivered by Zhang Dejiang, who sits on the seven-member Politburo Standing Committee as one of the country's most powerful politicians.
Premier Li Keqiang declared a war on pollution in a report during the country's annual parliamentary session on Wednesday, but critics say that the statement amounts to mere rhetoric without legal reforms to back it up.
The environment has emerged as one of Beijing's key priorities amid growing public disquiet about urban smog, dwindling and polluted water supplies and the widespread industrial contamination of farmland.
Sources with ties to the leadership told Reuters in February that amendments to China's 1989 environmental law would expand the environment ministry's powers significantly and allow regulators to suspend and shut down repeat offenders.
Sunday's policy report did not give specific details on how enforcement would be toughened. China's environment ministry has historically been unable to enforce anti-pollution laws effectively.
Almost all Chinese cities monitored for pollution last year failed to meet state standards.
China tested a domestically-produced drone aircraft that disperses smog by releasing a chemical catalyst, state media reported on Sunday.
Join the Conversation
- Image Of An Alien Revealed By US Intelligence Agent Suggests Existence Of Extraterrestrial Life -- Report
- US Police Officers Shoot 12-Year-Old Child ‘By Mistake’
- Woman Charged For Leaving Her Baby in Drain in Australia Needs 'Compassion' Says Social Worker
- [In Pictures] Police Fire As Protest Turns Into ‘Riot’ After Grand Jury Decision on Ferguson Shooting
- New Zealanders in Australia Consider Moving Back to Home Country For Better Life
- Russia Is Ready for Shooting War, Will Likely Win Looming Nuclear Showdown with U.S. – Report
- Microsoft Band Runs Out Of Stock, But Offers $10 Gift Voucher To Wait-Listed Customers
- Black Friday And Cyber Monday Sale 2014: AT&T's Cricket Wireless Offers Discounts On Lumia 1320, Galaxy S5, S4 And HTC Desire 510
- ISIS Kidnaps Iraqi Defence Minister’s Family, Executes Female Parliament Candidates
- Google Joins Forces with GoPro Inc with New Google Maps Focusing on Destination
- Target Early Black Friday 2014 Sale Ad Released For Nov. 26, 2014 Includes Deals On Toys, HDTVs And Video Games Such As ‘FIFA 15’ And ‘NHL 15’ For Xbox 360 [WATCH VIDEO]
- 16GB iPhone 6 for $99 at Sam’s Club is the Best 2014 Black Friday Deal Around