Tucked away in the daily environmental news from PlanetArk.org is this tidbit: “China is expected to issue new guidelines by the end of the year to encourage metals miners to conserve domestic resources and protect the environment, a director at the China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association said on Tuesday [Oct. 30, 2012].”
Hu Changping, director of heavy metals at the association, reportedly said that copper, lead and zinc mines will fall under the guidelines. Proposals for mining projects will be filed with the Ministry of Land and Resources. Projects will also be required to apply to the relevant authority for environmental approval.
This writer has long suspected (rightly or wrongly) that China cut environmental corners in its rush to grow in recent years. The news that the world’s most populous country is bringing its environmental priorities up to the level of most of the rest of the world is welcomed.