Related Authorities Establish Development Schemes Action Plans and Development Programs for Agricultural Renewable Energy

Since the Chinese government formulated China's Agenda 21 - White Paper of China's Population, Environment and Development in 21st Century (China's Agenda 21) in 1994, related authorities under the State Council established future development schemes, action plans, or near-term and long- and mid-term development programs related to the integrated utilization and technical development of agricultural renewable energy.

In China's Agenda 21, government proposals "to hasten construction of rural energy and to improve the deterioration of the ecological environment caused by over consumption of biological energy" are set out in Objective 13.12. Actions 13.20 and 13.57(b) provide for government actions "to develop techniques that use biomass energy to produce clean liquid fuel and to firmly promote applied techniques of marsh gas."22 In the Priority Program for China's Agenda 21, the development, utilization, and demonstration of biomass energy were listed as priority projects. Development objectives were also put forward to establish state development programs for biomass energy, to develop new techniques for the utilization of biomass energy, and to establish demonstration projects for the development and utilization of biomass energy in the period from 1994 to 2000.23

The Development Program of New Energy and Renewable Energy (1996-2010) established by the State Development Planning Commission in January 1995, prescribed energy development objectives, including hastening technical improvements in utilization techniques for rural biomass energy; the development of woodfuel forests and firewood-saving stoves; and the comprehensive utilization of waste residues of crop processing and wastes from animal husbandry.24

The Scheme of China's Policies on Energy Saving Technology - established by the State Development Planning Commission in May 1996 - set out the need to vigorously develop techniques in relation to the transformation and integrated utilization of biomass energy, such as gasification, liquefaction, and charring, and also the need to use agricultural organic wastes in rural areas to produce clean fuels, for example, marsh

gas.25

In the Ninth Five-Year Work Plan for Resources Saving and Integrated Utilization established in July 1996, the State Economic and Trade Commission provided that preferential policies, such as tax adjustment, financial subsidies, and discounted government loans, should be enforced in connection with the integrated utilization of energy and improving renewable energy techniques.26 The Key Points of Development of New Energy and Renewable Energy Industry in 2000-2015, established in August 2003, set out the objectives and tasks of "completing supporting technical service systems of renewable energy industry in 2006-2010," as well as "promoting construction of

22 China's Agenda 21, see http://www.acca21.org.cn/cchnwp13.html.

23 Priority Program for China's Agenda 21, see www.acca21.org.cn/pc4-5c.html.

24 State Development Planning Commission, Development Program of New Energy and Renewable Energy (1996-2010), see http://www.ccchina.gov.cn/source/ca/ca2002122601.htm.

25 State Development Planning Commission, Scheme of China's Policies on Energy Saving Technology, May 13, 1996, Great Collections of China Laws and Regulations (State Collections).

26 Ninth Five-Year Work Plan for Resources Saving and Integrated Utilization, see china-window.com.cn/ AnhuLw/gb/smjl/zcfg/04/011.htm.

large- and medium-scale marsh gas projects and developing equipment that can effectively utilize biomass energy."27 The Tenth Five-Year Plan on Energy Saving and Integrated Utilization of Resources, established in October 2001, prescribed the objectives of studying and establishing "incentive policies that can adapt to the requirements of the market economy and promote energy saving and the integrated utilization of resources," including the "transfer of tax and tax burdens," "public financial support," and "privileges in relation to loans."28

The State Environmental Protection Administration of China has identified the need to vigorously develop renewable energy techniques, to reduce the damage to vegetation caused by logging, to actively develop straw feed, and to prohibit the random collection and digging of native flora. In the Scheme for National Protection of the Ecological Environment,29 and in the Tenth Five-Year Plan on State Environmental Protection, the Administration determined the need "to popularize techniques for the integrated utilization and treatment of animal excrement"; "to vigorously promote integrated utilization approaches, such as the transformation of crop straw into manure and straw gasification; to develop new methods of industrial utilization of crop straw"; and "to develop new energy and new energy-saving technologies, such as marsh gas and energy-saving stoves." The stated objective of the Tenth Five-Year Plan was that the integrated utilization rate of straw all over China reach eighty percent and that the rate of animal excrement transformed into an energy resource reach seventy percent.30

In July 1996, in the Development Scheme of the State Project to Change Straw to Manure by Feeding it to Animals (1996-2000), the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture put forward policy approaches for the rational utilization of crop straw, for instance, the development of a comprehensive state plan for agriculture "to feed crop straw to livestock and to change straw to manure in the form of animal excrement." Furthermore, it was provided that the "Ministry of Agriculture and peoples' governments at all levels should establish medium- and long-term programmes and annual implementation plans regarding the project to feed crop straw to livestock and to return straw to farmland in the form of animal excrement"; "authorities should strengthen support for straw cultivation for livestock and financial authorities should arrange agricultural policy loans and support the development of straw feed"; "basic research and applied technological research on straw feed should be developed further"; the "Ministry of Agriculture and National Agriculture Integrated Development Office should formulate and complete methods and detailed implementation rules on the project to change straw to manure by feeding it to animals"; and "the development of strategic programmes for changing straw to manure by feeding it to animals all over China by the end of the 20th century."31 Further, in China's Agenda 21 - Action Plan of Agriculture established by the Ministry

27 State Economic and Trade Commission, Key Points of Development of New Energy and Renewable Energy Industry in 2000-2015, see http://www.china5e.com/laws/newenergy/newenergy-02.php.

28 State Economic and Trade Commission, Tenth Five-Year Plan on Energy Saving and Integrated Utilization of Resources, see http://www.gzii.gov.cn/right/zwxx/nydl/nydt/1230a.htm.

29 "Scheme of National Protection of Ecological Environment," People's Daily, Edition 5, December 22, 2000.

30 State Environmental Protection Administration of China, Tenth Five-Year Plan on State Environmental Protection, see http://dp.cei.gov.cn/lszl/hygh_1/hb1001.htm.

31 Ministry of Agriculture, Development Scheme of the State Project to Change Straw to Manure by Feeding it to Animals (1996-2000), see http://scmysp.net/zcfg/qgfg/zh/qgzhfg027.htm.

of Agriculture in January 1999, the action plan to rationally utilize straw resources, to develop straw feed, and to promote the construction of rural energy, primarily biomass energy, was accelerated.32

In the Scheme for Development of Agricultural Technology (2001-2010) issued by the State Council in April 2001, research and development work in relation to "production and effective utilization technologies for feed, farm and sideline products" and "non-pollution utilization techniques for crop straws and agricultural and forest wastes" was included in the "Ten Technological Initiatives" for the period of the Tenth Five-Year Plan.33 In the Scheme of Sustainable Development of Science and Technology in 20012010 established by the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology, the development of marsh gas technology and the acceleration of improvements in technology for the utilization of rural biomass energy are also noted as key areas for scientific and technical research.34 In the Action Scheme for Sustainable Development at the Beginning of the 21st Century, the vigorous development of marsh gas and energy saving stoves and the need to improve rural energy structures are also listed as key areas for sustainable development in China at the beginning of the twenty-first-century.35

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