In parts of China environmental law enforcement has encountered obstacles and certain local government officials have not been dealing properly with pollution, said a Chinese environmental official on Tuesday.
Some large state-owned and listed companies ignored environmental rules and local governments disregarded initiatives to improve their performances, said Lu Xinyuan, chief of the environmental supervision bureau of the State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA).
Lu cited a case in Liupanshui city, in southwest China's Guizhou Province, where a vice mayor was held responsible for making false environmental reports to inspectors from State Council departments.
On September 22 the vice mayor told the inspection team "there are no coal chemical companies in the city" when more than 30 such companies were operating.
Lu said the vice mayor had broken the Law for Civil Servants which forbids public officials from making false reports.
Environmental problems were also hitting industrial parks. Most of the 20 inspected had failed to carry out environmental assessments before construction.
Central departments would send more inspectors this month to investigate local environmental protection but Lu declined to identify the areas to be investigated.
Major industrial pollutants climbed in the first nine months compared with the same period last year driven by fast economic growth and high emissions of sulfur dioxide, figures from the SEPA show.
Twelve billion tons of wastewater was discharged in the first nine months. This is up 2.4 percent from the same period last year and sulfur dioxide emissions were up 4.2 percent.
(Xinhua News Agency November 22, 2006)