State owned enterprises (SOEs) should bear more responsibility in
China's drive to save energy, reduce pollution, and develop
recycling economies, said a deputy to the ongoing annual National People's Congress
Li Mingmin, who is also president of the Laigang Group, an iron
and steel company based in Laiwu, Shandong Province, said that SOEs should not
pursue fast short-term growth at the cost of excessive consumption
of natural resources and environmental pollution.
"Environmental protection and energy saving have become major
concerns for the nation as it enters a critical period of rapid
growth," Li said.
Iron and steel companies, which rely heavily on natural
resources, should make more efforts to reduce pollution and save
energy, according to Li.
"State owned iron and steel enterprises should concentrate more
on the introduction of higher technology rather than consuming
natural resources to maintain fast growth," Li said.
To this end, Li said that entrepreneurs of SOEs should play a
key role in saving energy and protecting the environment.
"Entrepreneurs should be responsible not only for their
companies, but also for the nation and the environment we are
living in," he said.
SOEs, iron and steel entities in particular, should develop a
recycling economic mode to sustain fast growth, Li added.
As one of the nation's leading state-owned iron and steel
companies, Laigang has attached great importance to saving natural
resources and environmental protection, he noted.
The company outlined its blueprint for development of recycling
early in 2001.
Since then, the company has earmarked more than 2 billion yuan
for environmental protection and the upgrading of recycling
technology and facilities.
As a result, the company's energy consumption has been gradually
reduced, with comprehensive energy consumption per ton of coal
dropping by 193 kilograms and water consumption per ton reduced
from 13.58 tons to 3.53 tons.
It has saved more than 3.3 billion kilowatt-hours of
electricity, 323 million tons of water and total energy worth 3.6
billion yuan (US$461 million) since 2001, Li said.
In terms of developing recycling operations, Laigang has
introduced advanced technology to adjust its steel production lines
and optimize energy consumption over the past five years.
During the 11th Five-Year Plan period (2006-10), the company
will shift its focus to recycling projects, including improvement
of techniques, equipment, and other facilities, said Li.
"By doing so, we aim to build the company into a model company
in environmental protection and energy saving among state owned
entities," he explained.
(China Daily March 13, 2007)