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China Enshrines Energy Conservation Fund in Law
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China's legislature is planning to include a special governmental energy conservation fund in the new draft of the Energy Conservation Law.

Li Mingzhi, an official with the Financial and Economic Committee of the National People's Congress who is in charge of drafting the amendment, said at a forum that the money will be used to fund energy conservation technology research, education and training and also for major energy conservation projects.

Yang Fuqiang, Vice President and Chief Representative of the Energy Foundation, said that a commercial fund -- more efficient in collecting corporate contributions -- should also be established.

The Energy Conservation Law took effect in 1998. To push energy conservation, China began amending the law in March of this year.

The fourth draft of the law is under discussion, said Li.

The draft will cover energy conservation evaluation and examination system, standards and certification as well as the management of major energy consuming enterprises.

Firms that cannot abide by the new energy efficiency standards will be punished.

The original law focused on energy conservation in industrial sectors, but the amendment will extend to sectors such as transport, construction and public institutions, said Li. Measures in favor of public transport are included.

China has set a goal of cutting energy consumption by four percent this year and 20 percent for the period 2006-2010.

However, instead of going down, energy consumption per 10,000 yuan of gross domestic product (GDP) in fact increased 0.8 percent in the first half year as GDP rose 10.9 percent year on year.

(Xinhua News Agency December 1, 2006)

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