(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) China has made key progress in finding and protecting mining resources in recent years, according to a recent report on land administration and mining resources.
Some 5.01 billion tones of petroleum reserves, 2.6 trillion cubic meters of natural gas and 279.8 billion tones of coal were discovered between 2008 and 2011 in a large-scale geological survey, Chinese Minister of Land and Resources Xu Shaoshi said.
Xu revealed the data while citing a State Council report submitted to the ongoing session of the top legislature for deliberation, according to China's news agency (Xinhua).
According to Xu, the country has formed a geological exploration system that values both public and commercial interests and encourages investment from multiple social sources.
During the four years, some 370.8 billion yuan was spent on mining resource exploration, up 110 percent year-on-year.
Among the total, central and local government funds took up only 15.3 percent, while the rest came from social investment, Xu said.
Meanwhile, a security deposit system to protect the environment in mining areas has been implemented in 30 provinces so far, Xu said.
According to the system, mine owners have to pay a security fee to land administration organs before they can begin mining.
The fee will be returned to the owners if they successfully repair environmental damage resulting from the mining. If they fail to do so, the fee will be seized and used by the government to clean up the area.
Xu said strengthened efforts have also been made to solve persistent environmental problems that occurred in the past, clean up tailing mines and crack down on illegal mining.