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China to curb production overcapacity amid green efforts
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A Chinese official vows on Thursday to curb the country's production overcapacity and avoid repetitious construction of projects that are less environmental-friendly.

The move is part of the country's efforts to promote energy conservation and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, Wan Bentai, chief engineer with the Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP), said on half of MEP minister Zhou Shengxian.

"Today's projects should never become the target of tomorrow's environment control program." He said in a speech delivered at the fifth China International Forum on Environment and Development.

The development and industrialization of green economy faces an important opportunity as the country has spent a large share of its 4 trillion yuan (586 billion U.S. dollar) stimulus package on energy conservation and greenhouse gas emissions reduction projects, he said.

He called for strengthened environment assessment measures on enterprises and optimizing the structure of key sectors such as the steel and auto industries.

The environmental problems brought about by China's sweeping urbanization, such as garbage and waste water disposal, should be seriously dealt with, he said, while stressing the importance of addressing issues in the rural areas such as water resources contamination, land pollution, garbage disposal and fertilization-caused pollution.

He also pledged that the government will intensify efforts in fostering creative and highly-efficient green technologies and encourage a green consumption model for both urban and rural dwellers.

A change to people's consumption habits, such as eating less meat, is conducive to environmental protection and greenhouse gas emission reduction, said Khalid Malik, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Program in China, in the forum.

The fifth China International Forum on Environment and Development was co-hosted by the MEP and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). It was organized by the All-China Environment Federation.

The annual forum has been held for four years with the aim of creating a platform for international organizations and Chinese government agencies to discuss issues related to environmental protection. It also invites the participation of non-governmental organizations(NGOs) in discussing environmental matters of global importance.

(Xinhua News Agency September 17, 2009)

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