XINING -- China has closed 200 illegal coal mines this year to protect the eco-system of the northwestern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.
“On one hand, the safety of the miners was poorly protected in the illegal mines, and on the other hand the move protects the environment, as illegal coal mines are major polluters on the plateau,” said Guo Xianshi, an official with the Qinghai Provincial Administration of Work Safety on Dec 8.
The province launched a campaign to clear the illegal mines at the beginning of the year. Many of the mines operated without official permission, or proper safety and pollution control facilities, said Guo.
More than 110 other mines have been ordered to suspend operations until safety and pollution control meet national standards.
Guo said the administration will train mine owners on work safety and pollution management in the coming few months.