News / Asia

China Struggling to Meet 2011-2015 Environment Goals

Local residents wait on motorcycles and bicycles at a traffic junction during a hazy day in downtown Shanghai, China, Dec. 6, 2013.Local residents wait on motorcycles and bicycles at a traffic junction during a hazy day in downtown Shanghai, China, Dec. 6, 2013.
x
Local residents wait on motorcycles and bicycles at a traffic junction during a hazy day in downtown Shanghai, China, Dec. 6, 2013.
Local residents wait on motorcycles and bicycles at a traffic junction during a hazy day in downtown Shanghai, China, Dec. 6, 2013.
Reuters
China is struggling to meet its 2011-2015 targets to reduce pollution, cut greenhouse gas growth and introduce cleaner sources of energy, a report submitted to the country's parliament said on Wednesday.
    
The report, which covers the 2011-2012 period, said faster-than-expected economic growth was to blame for China's failure to meet environmental targets ranging from energy use to nitrogen oxide emissions.
    
The state of China's environment has come into particular focus in 2013, with most major cities engulfed by hazardous smog during the course of the year, including Beijing in January and Shanghai earlier this month.
    
Desperate to head off growing public anger about the state of the country's air, water and soil, Beijing has promised to put an end to its "growth at all costs" economic model. It has already introduced new policies aimed at reining in polluting industries, cutting coal use and thinning traffic.

But the government report said China was already playing catch-up, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
    
China wants energy intensity - the amount of energy consumed per unit of gross domestic product (GDP) - to fall by 16 percent over 2011-2015, but it had dropped by just 5.54 percent by the end of last year.
    
Efforts to reduce the amount of carbon emissions per unit of GDP by 17 percent over the same period were also behind schedule, with the actual decline over 2011-2012 standing at just 6.6 percent.
    
China also aims to raise the share of non-fossil fuels in its total primary energy mix to 11.4 percent over the 2011-2015 period, but it had reached just 9.4 percent by the end of last year, up only 0.8 percentage points since 2010.
    
The slow progress made over 2011-2012 could put additional pressure on local governments to implement tougher measures against polluters, and even shut down energy-intensive industries like steel or cement.
    
At the end of 2010, northern China's Hebei and several other provinces ordered dozens of steel mills to close down in a last-ditch attempt to meet a binding 2006-2010 energy intensity target.
    
This month, several steel production facilities have already been temporarily closed in Hebei in order to cut pollution, and more closures are expected next year.

You May Like

Jihadist Assassin says Goal of Tunisia Murders Was Chaos

Abu Muqatil at-Tunusi’s remarks in a propaganda interview also cast light on attack on Bardo Museum More

Russia Denies License to Tatar-Language TV Station in Crimea

OSCE official says denial shows 'politically selective censorship of free and independent voices in Crimea is continuing' More

Kenyan Startups Tackle Expensive Remittances Through Bitcoin

Some think services could give Western Union a run for its money, though others say it’s still got a long way to go More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedomi
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 01, 2015 1:41 AM
Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Nigerians Welcome Buhari's Return to Power

Crowds of jubilant Nigerians nationwide have celebrated the return to power of former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari. The retired army general won this year's presidential election with more than 2 million votes more than incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan. Buhari's supporters hope he can strengthen the country's economy and security once he takes office in late May. Zlatica Hoke has this story.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Gamma Ray Observatory to Open Soon in Mexico

American and Mexican scientists have completed construction of the world's largest gamma ray observatory, situated high in central Mexico’s Sierra Negra Mountain. The observatory's huge array of water-based detectors will soon start discovering secrets about black holes and supernovas. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regret

Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Germanwings Findings Raise Issue of Psychological Testing for Pilots

More is being discovered about the co-pilot in the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. Investigators say he was hiding a medical condition, raising questions about the mental qualifications of pilots. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More