The national environmental watchdog has sent a blacklist of 30
polluters to leading financial institutions in connection with the
country's green credit policy.
The system is aimed at starving notorious polluters of the funds
they need to operate.
"The deterioration of China's environment tells that it is not
effective to rely on just one department to monitor pollution
emissions," said Pan Yue, deputy minister of the State
Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA).
"The environmental watchdog needs to work hand in hand with
financial policymakers to find ways to punish polluting
On the blacklist, copies of which were given to the People's
Bank of China (PBOC), and the China Banking Regulatory Commission
(CBRC), the SEPA listed a group of polluters that had failed
environmental assessments or to implement green regulations.
As a result, the listed factories will face challenges borrowing
money from banks.
Most of the factories were in the paper-making, coking,
pharmaceuticals, iron and steel, and brewery industries. Eight
polluters were from Heilongjiang Province.
The SEPA, PBOC and CBRC jointly worked out the green credit
policy this month. Under it, banks will be stricter about lending
to companies that do not pass environmental assessments or fail to
implement environment-protection regulations.
By including the environmental records of enterprises in the
credit system, the central bank has also alerted commercial banks
to the risks of lending money to polluting enterprises that may be
shut down for violating environmental rules.
Wang Jinnan, a senior expert at the Chinese Academy for
Environmental Planning, said: "The listed plants are small and
medium-sized plants, which face more challenges than large
companies when applying for loans from financial institutions. The
green credit system is a reasonable way to control pollution from
the small and medium-sized plants."
"But if large companies were on the list this time, the policy
would be more influential and effective."
Pan said that with its current authority, the toughest measure
the SEPA could take to tackle the frequent water pollution
accidents would be to stop approvals of new projects in certain
areas. However, such measures will not stop water pollution.
"So we have to gain some economic leverage to punish polluters,"
In the first six months of this year, the industrial sector grew
by 18.5 percent. The six most energy-consuming sectors grew by 20.1
Pan said increasing the cost of financing and soaking up their
sources of credit were effective ways to slow the growth of
He also said that as a follow-up to the green credit policy,
which is also in use in the international community, the SEPA will
cooperate with financial institutions to promote a series of green
policies on taxation, insurance and securities.
(China Daily July 31, 2007)