China to launch five-year sustainability plan

3 Mar 2011

China will launch a new five-year plan on Saturday which will focus on tackling environmental problems, from carbon emissions to water pollution, reports Reuters.

The plan for 2011-2015 will outline new directives aimed at reversing the 30 years of damage done and hopes to increase clean and renewable energy.

Chinese Environment Minister Zhou Shengxian wrote in an essay on Monday that, “The depletion, deterioration and exhaustion of resources and the deterioration of the environment have become serious bottlenecks constraining economic and social development.”

Beijing has promised to reduce carbon intensity, by cutting the amount of CO2 produced per unit of economic growth by 40-45pc by 2020 from 2005 levels.

It also plans to increase the share of renewables to 15pc of the country’s total energy mix.

The government’s goal is to clean up heavy industries, such as steel and aluminum, encourage non-fossil fuels, cut nitrogen oxide emissions and improve water and air quality.

Last month, Premier Wen Jiabao said China would cut energy and carbon intensity by 16-17pc from 2011 to 2015.