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Beautiful city fights against polluters
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The government of Lijiang, an ancient city and World Cultural Heritage site in southwestern China's Yunnan Province, has threatened to impose hefty fines on polluters in order to protect the local environment.


Lijiang, an ancient city and World Cultural Heritage site in Yunnan Province


Local companies will face a maximum fine of one million yuan (about US$146,000) if they fail to meet annual targets of energy consumption and emission reduction, sources with the local environment protection bureau said.


The companies will lose tax rebates and other preferential policies, and they face a threat of being shut down if they do not complete renovation in a stipulated two years' time, he said.


The bureau is keeping a close eye on heavy polluters in the city, including cement, cigarettes and metallurgy factories, he added.


The ancient city of Lijiang, located on the northwestern tip of Yunnan, is famous for the Naxi ethnic group's ancient residential buildings constructed during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).


The 800-year-old city, which was listed as World Cultural Heritage site in 1997, now receives four million tourists a year.


The city has recently won the UNESCO 2007 Award of Merit for its efforts in conservation and restoration of ancient buildings.


(Xinhua News Agency October 21, 2007)

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