Tighter environmental standards for rare earth industry

Updated: 2011-04-12 13:52

By Song Jingli (

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China's Ministry of Environmental Protection has ordered a series of environmental checks for rare earth mining and refining companies.

Those that fail will not be allowed to be listed, according to the ministry's website.

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Environmental departments will not approve environmental evaluation reports for new projects by companies that cheat or do not pass the checks. Those companies' applications for environmental checks, which are required for going public, will also be denied.

Rare earth companies have to meet eight criteria to pass these checks. For example, they must pay sewage charges on time and have no major environmental pollution accidents or significant ecological damage events within three years. They are also required to pass clean-production evaluation and treat or discharge hazardous waste and general industrial solid waste in an environmentally sound way.

These checks include self-checks, preliminary checks by provincial environmental protection departments and final checks by the ministry. After all these checks the results will be declared.


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