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Constructing Eco-province and Building Green Zhejiang

2003-10-31author:Xi Jinpingsource:

  Mr. Chairman, Council Members and Experts, Ladies and Gentlemen,

  I am very glad to have the chance to take part in the 2nd Meeting of the 3rd Phase of CCICED. According to the meeting arrangement, I would like to present you a brief introduction on ecological construction and sustainable development in Zhejiang province.

  I. Constructing Eco-province is an inevitable choice for Zhejiang to accelerate building Well-off society in all-round way and achieve modernization basically in advance

  Zhejiang province is located in the southern part of the Yangtze River Delta on the southeastern coast of China. The province covers a total continental area of 101,800 square kilometers and is one of the smallest provinces in China. The permanent population of Zhejiang amounts to 46.47 million. In year 2002, provincial GDP, per capita GDP and financial income reached 779.6 billion RMB, 16,838 RMB and 116.7 billion RMB respectively. The above three indexes all ranked 4th among the provinces and municipalities in China. Therefore, Zhejiang is a province with small area and limited continental resources as well as big population and tremendous economy. Meanwhile, Zhejiang has very limited environmental capacity and unbalanced industrial distribution. About 70% of population is concentrated in plains and industries are also relatively clustered in coastal and plain area.

  Zhejiang has achieved sustainable and rapid economic development since opening-up and reform over the past 20 years, with average annual GDP growth rate at 13%. Rapid economic development has yielded pressure on resources and environment. Especially after entering the new century, our province has marched into a new phase of speeding up industrialization, urbanization, informationization, marketization and internationalization, building well-off society in all-round way, and achieving basic modernization in advance. Economic and social development has put forward higher requirements for ecological environment. Our province has made the target for quadrupling GDP from year 2000 to year 2020. Without fundamental transformation in the way of economic development, more serious resources waste and environmental problems will be unavoidably resulted in, which will, in reverse, restrain substantially economic and social sustainable development. Therefore, we have to establish new concepts of development, which will attach more importance to ecological construction and environmental protection and pay more attention to harmonious and sustainable development among economy, society, population, resource and environment. We have to explore new ways of development, which will transform the main approach from extensive growth to intensive one, promote the shift of economic development from quantity expansion to quality improvement and make great efforts to achieve new quantity expansion based on quality improvement.

  It was according to the provincial basic characteristics and development concepts that Zhejiang Committee of CPC and Provincial Government mastered the rules, considered the current situation, took the important thought of "Three Represents" and the spirit of 16th National Congress of CPC as our guide and finally based on previous work, made the significant strategic decision so-called "Further Utilizing Ecological Advantages of Zhejiang, Constructing Eco-province and Building Green Zhejiang". Authorized by State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA), Zhejiang has become the 5th Eco-province Construction Pilot Province after Hainan, Jilin, Heilongjiang and Fujian province in China.

  II. General target and main tasks of Eco-province Construction in Zhejiang

  Eco-province is a provincial-level administration region in which harmonious development has been achieved among economy, society and ecological environment and every field is basically in accordance with the requirements of sustainable development. Constructing Eco-province means to uphold sustainable development strategy, apply the principles of ecology and concepts of recycling economy, take transformation of economic development way and improvement of environmental quality as the precondition, give full play to the advantages of regional ecology, resources, industries and mechanism, make big efforts to develop ecological economy, improve ecological environment, cultivate ecological culture, make overall planning and implementation of environmental protection, social development and economic construction, and realize harmonious and sustainable development among regional economy, society, population, resources and environment.

  The general target of Eco-province Construction in Zhejiang is that after making efforts for nearly 20 years, we will basically realize the adaptability of population scale and quality to the requirements of productivity development, and economic and social development to the resources and environmental carrying capacity. Zhejiang will be built up into a province with relatively developed ecological economy, beautiful ecological environment, harmonious ecological residency area, prosperous ecological culture and comparatively strong sustainable development power. We will lead the whole province in a civilized development way of "developing production, wealthy life and sound ecology".

  The main tasks of Eco-province Construction in Zhejiang are making tremendous efforts to establish Five Systems and giving highest priorities to develop Ten Key Fields. Five Systems are as follows:

  1. Ecological Economic System with Cycling Economy as the Core. We should take a new road to industrialization, adjust and optimize economic structure, cultivate and develop cycling economy, flourish eco-agriculture, eco-industry and modern-service industry, make big efforts to advocate green consumption, and search for one economic development way featuring science orientation, resource saving, cleaner production, ecological protection and cycling economy.

  2. Natural Resource-guarantee System with Sustainable Utilization. We should further improve the laws, regulations and resource management system, strengthen reasonable exploitation, utilization and protection of natural resources, and increase resource utilization efficiency and comprehensive utilization level. Meanwhile, we will make the best use of domestic and international resources and strengthen resource-guarantee capacity for economic and social sustainable development.

  3. Ecological Environment System with Beautiful Mountains and Rivers. We should control strictly and reduce gradually the total volume of pollutant discharge. Practical and effective solutions should be developed to settle the problems of water pollution, air pollution, sea pollution and agricultural area pollution. We should work hard to satisfy the requirements for environmental quality of function regions. Protection of bio-diversity will be carried out thoroughly. Anti-disaster and disaster-alleviation capacity will be improved obviously. Environmental supporting capacity will be promoted increasingly for economic and social development.

  4. Ecological System of Population with Adaptability to Resource and Environmental Carrying Capacity. We will implement the basic national strategy for Family Planning, combine the population issues closely with ecological construction, and achieve step by step the population with suitable scale, optimized structure and reasonable distribution. At the same time, we should learn the lessons from SARS disaster, strengthen construction of public sanitation system and residency environment, advocate civilized and healthy life-style, and facilitate broad personal development in all-round way.

  5. Scientific and High-efficient Capacity Supporting and Guarantee System. We will accelerate innovation in system, mechanism and management related to Eco-province Construction. The science and education support for Eco-province Construction will be reinforced. We will broaden the demonstration effects of ecological pilot zones and sustainable development test area. We will improve the forecasting and alerting system of ecological and environmental security. Scientific decision-making and evaluation mechanism concerning Eco-province Construction will be established.

  Under the framework of Five Systems, we will give highest priorities to develop Ten Key Fields, i.e. Eco-industry and Cleaner Production, Eco-agriculture Construction, Ecological Public Welfare Forest Construction, Ten-thousand-miles Clean River Program, Eco-environmental Treatment, Eco-town Construction, Comprehensive Treatment of Rural Environment, Eco-construction of Blue Sea, Poverty Eradication by Leaving Mountains and Prosperity Built-up with Assistance, Support by Science-Education and Management of Decision-making. Through above work, we will integrate all kinds of resources and organize and promote the realization of economic and social sustainable development.

  III. The main work and results of Eco-province Construction

  With strong support from SEPA, our province has started the concrete work concerning Eco-province Construction in all-round way. Regarding environmental protection and ecological construction in recent years, the work we have done and the results we have accomplished are mainly focused in the five aspects as follows:

  1. Strengthen the role of leadership, allocate responsibilities and list environmental protection and eco-construction as the important work of CPC committee and government at various levels. Provincial Committee of CPC and Government have set up the Leading Group for Eco-province Construction Work. Standing Committee of Provincial People's Congress has approved the Decision on Constructing Eco-province. Provincial Government has worked out the "Outline for Eco-province Construction Plan of Zhejiang". Construction plan and implementation scheme of eco-city and eco-county have been also developed by local governments across Zhejiang based on specific situation. Furthermore, we have integrated tasks of Eco-province Construction into the Work Target and Responsibility System for Chief Executive of Government at all levels. System of One-ticket-veto Played by Environmental Protection and Eco-construction has been adopted in the process of assessing leaders and cadres. Leaders at various levels are required to build up the concept of "Green GDP". Now we are exploring actively the Green Accounting System.

  2. Actively implement strategic industrial restructuring and develop cycling economy. According to the requirements of new-pattern industrialization, we have combined construction of advanced manufacturing base and Eco-province. Cleaner production has been promoted. On the one hand, we have upgraded traditional dominant industries with high-and-new, advanced and applicable technologies. The high-and-new technology industry has been boosted. We have accelerated the development of environmental equipment manufacturing industry and environmental service industry, sped up elimination of out-of-date process, equipment and production capacity, promoted restructuring of key industries with resource consumption and pollutant discharge such as chemical and textile industry, and treated structural pollution. On the other hand, we have adjusted industrial distribution according to ecological conditions and environmental carrying capacity. A group of industrial parks have been planned and constructed in order to muster industrial companies into the parks and realize co-construction and share of infrastructure and pollution centralized treatment facilities. In recent years, our province has closed, stopped, incorporated and transformed nearly 3000 "Fifteen Types of Small Enterprises", among which 230 small cement kilns have been dismantled. Moreover, we have boosted strongly green and pollution-free agriculture. Eleven Provincial-level Agricultural Hi-tech Demonstration Zone (AHDZ), over 2200 Modern Agriculture Demonstration Zone (MADZ) and 1000 Pollution-free Agricultural Products Base (PAPB) have been established across Zhejiang.

  3. Emphasize the combination of governmental leadership and market-oriented operation, and promote industrialization of pollution treatment. We have magnified the leading role of governmental fund and utilized the advantages of abundant private capital in our province. By adoption of market-oriented operation mechanism, we have encouraged and supported social capital to invest in Eco-province Construction. Multi-investment mechanism so-called "Government Leading, Market Promotion and Public Participation" have been established and improved. From the year 1998 to 2002, provincial financial budget at a total amount of 130 million RMB had been allocated to promote the construction of 1250 industrial pollution treatment projects in terms of interest subsidy, which had stimulated total project investment over 14 billion RMB. The whole province has invested in environmental protection area at the average rate of over 2% GDP in recent years. Modes of multi-investment and professional operation, which have been practiced in Shaoxin Round-city River Treatment, Ningbo Fenglin Domestic Waste Incineration Plant, Jiaxing Xiuzhou Honghe Wastewater Treatment Plant and Pinghu Pollution Treatment Facility, are typical examples of industrialization of pollution treatment.

  4. Make overall planning for urban and rural harmonious development and propel the drive for urban and rural environmental comprehensive treatment. Our province has implemented urbanization development strategy at an early stage. At current time, according to the requirements of coordinating urban and rural economic and social development, the integration of cities and rural area has been accelerated. In this process, on the one hand, we have strengthened urban environmental protection and construction. 36 municipal wastewater treatment facilities have been constructed. Smoke and dust control area and urban up-to-standard environmental noise area has reached 2300 km2 and 1000 km2 respectively. On the other hand, we have attached importance to rural environmental comprehensive treatment. "Demonstration of One-thousand Villages and Treatment of Ten-thousand Villages" project has been carried out. A number of Well-off Demonstration Villages have been planned and built. Treatment of domestic pollution produced in rural residency area has been strengthened in all-round way across the whole province. At the same time, we have enhanced the management and construction of Ecological Demonstration Zone (EDZ), Natural Protection Zone (NPZ) and Key Ecological Function Zone (KEFZ). In our province, 46 NPZs and 67 Forest Parks above provincial-level have been established. Forest coverage rate has reached 59.4%. Many cities and counties, such as Hangzhou, Ningbo, Shaoxing and An'ji, have been entitled to either National Ecological Demonstration Zone (NEDZ) or National Environmental Protection Model City (NEPMC). We have also guided and encouraged farmers living in remote mountain area to come down and move out. At the end of last year, 323 small immigrant living area with over 50 families have been built up. About 80,000 families and over 300,000 immigrants from mountain area have been accommodated, which has contributed not only to poverty eradication and prosperity built-up but also protection of ecological environment of mountain area.

  5. Strengthen propaganda and establish sound mechanism of public participation. We have made the best use of news media to disseminate widely the importance of environmental protection and eco-construction. Activities like building Green Enterprise, Green Community and Green School have been carried out to cultivate public environmental awareness. We have introduced the Reward for Environmentally Illegal Behavior Tip-offs activity and established the channels for public participation in supervision on environmental management. The common sense has been developed that protection of eco-environment is to protect productivity and without attaching importance to eco-environment, government is not a clear-minded government, leader is not a qualified leader, enterprise is not a promising enterprise and citizen is a citizen without modern civilization awareness.

  Zhejiang Committee of CPC and Provincial Government will lead the people of whole province to implement conscientiously the spirit of the 3rd Plenary Session of 16th Central Committee of CPC, build up the concepts of all-round, coordinated and sustainable development, make overall planning of harmonious development between mankind and nature, establish the mechanism of promoting economic and social sustainable development, and make unremitting efforts to implement sustainable development strategy and promote Eco-province construction. We will work hard, year by year and term by term, to turn our province into a Green Zhejiang with prosperous economy, beautiful nature and civilized society.

  CCICED has contributed significantly to the undertaking of ecological environment and sustainable development in our country and yielded positive influence in international communities since its foundation. Under the guidance from CCICED, we will further strengthen international communication and cooperation in the fields of environment and development and promote the undertaking of environment and development in Zhejiang at a higher level.

  Finally, Mr. President and Committeemen, you are warmly welcome to visit and have a look at Zhejiang. I sincerely hope the next meeting of CCICED could be held in Zhejiang.

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