Coal-rich province closes 7,400 polluting firms in 2017

Date: Jan 26, 2018
The coal-rich north China province of Shanxi shut down more than 7,400 polluting firms in 2017 as part of its fight against pollution.

Local authorities also dismantled 11,000 small coal-fired boilers last year, the provincial environmental protection bureau said Thursday.

Meanwhile, more than 1 million households in the province switched from coal to gas- or electricity-powered heating systems, and 59.8 percent of buses and 21.3 percent of taxis were replaced by new energy vehicles, it said.

Shanxi is a major energy base and its traditional mining, coking, steel, and coal chemical industries have caused severe pollution.

Local authorities took harsh measures to tackle air pollution last year, sending environmental inspectors to all 11 cities across the province.

They filed 5,502 illegal sewage discharge cases and levied 580 million yuan (about $91 million) in record fines, up 123 percent year-on-year.

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