China to Rate, Reward Heavy Polluters for Emissions Cuts
Lu Hongan
/SOURCE : yicai
China to Rate, Reward Heavy Polluters for Emissions Cuts

(Yicai Global) July 18 -- Chinese regulators plan to carry out environmental rating and differentiated management of 15 heavily polluting industries and offer preferences to those who strive to raise their eco-game.

The sectors affected include steel, coal, cement and chemicals. The aim is to further lower emissions and implement production limitations or work shutdowns on high energy-consumption industries and to do so more accurately, Economic Information Daily reported today.

Authorities plan to rate the companies at A, B and C levels for differentiated management via indicators such as production process levels and pollution control technology, per the report. Companies in such key environmental protection areas as the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei and surrounding areas and the Yangtze River Delta region are subject to varying production limits based on their ratings and weather conditions.

The ranking scheme aims to foster fair competition by forcing firms with high energy use to redouble their environmental protection efforts and elevate their enthusiasm to cut emissions, per the report.

Some steel companies shell out CNY260 (USD37.8) to CNY270 in environmental protection per ton of steel while others spend a paltry USD1.60 to USD2.70, a spread of more than 20 times.

There is no way to implement the same control policies with these companies, said Liu Bingjiang, director of the Department of Atmospheric Environment of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, who hopes the rating scheme will not cause the bad money drive out good and that firms that meet the ultra-low emission standards will benefit from it, which is a main reason for the scheme.

Southern Sichuan and Jiangsu provinces have recently announced that companies will be exempt from production limits or halts it they meet ultra-low emission requirements. Sichuan's rating documents for the cement industry divides companies into A, B, C and D categories based on their pollution emission levels.

A-rated firms need not halt production in peak seasons, but the other three categories will have to for a fixed amount of days. Firms with ecological rap sheets are barred from production preferences in peak seasons. 

Editor: Ben Armour

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Keywords: Environmental Protection , Steel Industry