no more trash-fired powerplants

新京报/The Beijing News reports that the Ministry of Environmental Protection, State Development and Reform Commission, and the Energy Resources Bureau (but wait, that’s a branch of the SDRC, but the report seems to list them separately….) have decided no more trash-fired powerplants should be built in urban areas. I wonder…. Could there be a connection?


Forbidden to build new trash-fired powerplants in urban areas


Trash-fired powerplants should in general not be constructed in built-up urban areas. Yesterday the Ministry of Environmental Protection, State Development and Reform Council and Energy Resources Bureau announced they require a strengthening of the environmental management of domestic trash-fired powerplants and other power generation projects.


The ministry and commission require that trash-fired powerplants and other biomass power generation projects should in general not be constructed in urban built-up areas. At the same time, they should also make clear a reasonable protective gap according to the situation of the emissions of foul smells or other pollutants. Renovation and extension projects should maintain a distance of no less than 300 metres from surrounding residential areas, schools, hospitals and other public facilities.


For emissions standards, this kind of power generation project must ensure that sulfur dioxide and other acidic gases and other common pollutants in the smoke meet national standard. For dioxin emissions, however, they must implement EU standards.


The Ministry of Environmental Protection also requires that these power generation projects should increase the transparency of public consultations in their environmental assessment, organise appropriate conferences and consultation to communicate with the public and relevant people. For projects of greater environmental sensitivity or controversy, local governments are responsible for explaining to the public, and hold hearings when necessary.

Alright, so I thoroughly buggered up that translation, I’m sure. In my defence, being three quarters of the way through this weeks lessons and having a lot of other work stuff to deal with, I’m tired, and I seem to have been smacked hard in the nose with some allergy almost as bad as what I had to put up with in Changsha. Anyway:

Step forwards? Step backwards? Step sideways? I’m calling this a step forward. Using rubbish for fuel is clearly better than just dumping it, but you can’t put stinky, polluting powerplants in the middle of residential areas or near schools or hospitals. Obviously appropriate locations must be chosen for such projects.

That said, I still have no sympathy for those rich bastards who bought apartments in the new fancy housing developments around Gaoantun without bothering to check what was in the neighbourhood.

About the Author


A Kiwi teaching English to oil workers in Beijing, studying Chinese in my spare time, married to a beautiful Beijing lass, consuming vast quantities of green tea (usually Xihu Longjing/西湖龙井, if that means anything to you), eating good food (except for when I cook), missing good Kiwi ale, breathing smog, generally living as best I can outside Godzone and having a good time of it.

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