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February 1, 2023   scio.gov.cn
China's Compensation System for Eco-Environmental Conservation

Compensation;Eco-Environmental Conservation;DRR & Climate Change Resilience

Intro: China’s State Council Information Office unveiled a white paper titled “China's Green Development in the New Era” on January 19. It systematically summarizes China's actions and achievements in green development over the past decade, and expounds the country's ideas and experience of green development. Below is an excerpt of the whitepaper.

Full text: http://english.scio.gov.cn/whitepapers/2023-01/19/content_85067818_8.htm

China has taken active steps to improve its compensation system for eco­environmental conservation, and continued to increase fiscal support for this compensation in key areas. Interregional cooperation has been steadily expanded, and new progress has been made in establishing market-based compensation mechanisms.

China has improved the mechanism for fiscal compensation from higher-level to lower-level governments. Governments are required to play the leading role in ensuring that all parties concerned fulfill their responsibilities for environmental protection. A compensation mechanism has been established for the conservation of key ecological systems including forests and grasslands. More support is provided to main players in eco-environmental conservation. The mechanism for compensation and transfer payments to key functional zones now covers more than 800 counties across the country.

China has strengthened interregional cooperation in compensation for eco-environmental conservation. Policies have been introduced to support transregional compensation mechanisms in the Yangtze River and Yellow River basins. Guidelines were formulated on compensation in the Dongting Lake, Poyang Lake and Taihu Lake basins. To encourage closer ties between the regions which carry out eco-environmental conservation and those regions which benefit from these endeavors, and between the regions located in the upper reaches of a river and those in the lower reaches, China has initiated a compensatory relationship for pollution control and cooperation on industrial projects. As of the end of 2021, 14 cross-provincial compensation mechanisms had been established for eco-environmental conservation across river basins.

China has adopted creative measures to develop market-based compensation mechanisms. By leveraging the roles of both the government and the market, China encourages and guides all stakeholders to participate in compensation systems, so as to open up more financing channels. It has continuously improved its systems for carbon emissions, pollutant discharge, and water use permits, and refined its policies concerning green finance, green labelling, and green buildings in support of green industries.