Last update:
2021-08-02

Datang Duolun Coal Chemical Project, Inner Mongolia, China

Since the beginning in 2006, the residents nearby suffered from and complained about land dispossession and environmental pollution issues such as wastewater discharge, air and noise pollution and coal ash dust.


Description:

The Datang Duolun coal chemical project was established in Duolun County, Xilin Gol League, Inner Mongolia, in 2006. The project is owned by Inner Mongolia Duolun Coal Chemical (内蒙古多伦煤化工), a joint venture between Datang Energy Chemical Company Limited (大唐能源化工有限公司, 60%) and China Datang Corporation (大唐集团, 40%).[1] The estimated total investment of the project is CNY 27 billion (USD 3.98 billion).[2] The Datang Duolun coal chemical plant has an area of 168.5 hectare and was set up to produce 1.38 million tons of coal-based olefins (5 million tons of methanol as an intermediate product).[3] The first phase was expected to produce 460,000 tons/year of olefins (1.68 million tons of methanol as intermediate product).[4] The project uses lignite, which is considered the lowest rank of coal due to its relatively low heat content, from the Shengli Coalfield East #2 coal mine (内蒙古东胜利2号煤矿).[5] It was considered a "star project” as it is both a demonstration project for methanol to polypropylene (MTP) projects domestically and the first of its kind large-scale lignite based polypropylene production project in the world.[5] The project also involves the construction of a special coal transportation line to send coal from Shengli Coalfield in Inner Mongolia to Fengning in Hebei Province, with an annual transportation volume of 30 million tons. Besides, the project would develop part of the Shengli Coalfield East #2 open-pit mine and build an open-pit coal mine with an annual output of 30 million tons of raw coal (10 million tons in the first phase). In parallel to the coal chemical project, a 4x135MW self-use power plant was constructed.[4]

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Datang Duolun Coal Chemical Project, Inner Mongolia, China
Country:China
State or province:Inner Mongolia
Location of conflict:Dolon Nor, Duolun County, Xilin Gol League (锡林郭勒盟多伦县淖尔镇盆窑村)
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Land acquisition conflicts
Coal extraction and processing
Chemical industries
Water treatment and access to sanitation (access to sewage)
Specific commodities:Coal
Chemical products
Project Details and Actors
Project details

The Datang Duolun coal chemical project was established in Duolun County, Xilin Gol League, Inner Mongolia, in 2006. The Datang Duolun coal chemical plant was set up to produce 1.38 million tons of coal-based olefins (5 million tons of methanol as an intermediate product).[3] The first phase was expected to produce 460,000 tons/year of olefins (1.68 million tons of methanol as an intermediate product).[4] The project uses lignite, which is considered the lowest rank of coal due to its relatively low heat content, from the Shengli Coalfield East #2 coal mine (内蒙古东胜利2号煤矿).[5]

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Project area:168.5
Level of Investment:USD 3,980,000,000 (CNY 27 billion)
Type of populationRural
Affected Population:43,000 (estimated based on population of Dolon Nor Town, Duolun County)
Start of the conflict:01/07/2012
Company names or state enterprises:Datang Energy Chemical Company Limited (大唐能源化工集团有限公司) (Datang Energy Chemical) from China - Major shareholder of the company that directly led to the pollutions
China Datang Corporation (CDT) from China - Parent company and shareholder (40%) of the company that directly led to the pollutions
Datang Intl Power Generational Co.,Ltd (大唐国际发电股份有限公司) (Datang Power) from China - The listed entity behind the controling company of the Datang Duolun coal chemical project
Datang Inner Mongolia Duolun Coal Chemical Co. Ltd. (Duolun Coal Chemical Company) from China - Owner of the coal to olefin project
Zhongxin Nenghua Science and Technology Co.,Ltd. (中新能化科技有限公司) (Zhongxin Nenghua) from China - Acquired the coal to olefin project that led to the pollutions starting from 2016.
Relevant government actors:Ministry of Environmental Protection (Ministry of Ecology and Environment, MEE, as of 2018) 环保部
Xilin Gol League Environmental Protection Bureau (Ecology and Environment Bureau as of 2018) 锡林郭勒盟环保局
Duolun County Environmental Protection Bureau (Ecology and Environment Bureau as of 2018) 多伦县环保局
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:- China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF), http://www.cbcgdf.org
- Green Collar (绿领) https://weibo.com/1824425283/about
- Green Beagle Environmental Institute (达尔问自然求知社) http://www.bjep.org.cn/
- Greenpeace https://www.greenpeace.org/eastasia/publication/1800/pipe-dreams/
- China Listed Company Environmental Responsibility Investigation Committee (中国上市公司环境责任调查组委会)
- Nature University (自然大学)
- Environmental Research Institute by Source Enthusiasts in Fengtai District of Beijing (北京市丰台源头爱好者环境研究所)
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityMEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
Reaction stageIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
International ejos
Local ejos
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Pastoralists
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of mobilization:Blockades
Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of alternative proposals
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Waste overflow, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion
Potential: Global warming
Other Health impactsVomiting actions, nausea, and potential exposure to lung diseases
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Loss of livelihood, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place, Other socio-economic impacts
Other socio-economic impactsThe health of livestock was affected, which has impact on the livelihood of local residents.
Outcome
Project StatusIn operation
Conflict outcome / response:Compensation
Environmental improvements, rehabilitation/restoration of area
Technical solutions to improve resource supply/quality/distribution
Application of existing regulations
Proposal and development of alternatives:1. The NGO representatives from the 5 NGOs that issued the public letter to China Datang Corporation to request for its response on environmental pollution accusations (including Green Collar, Green Beagle Environmental Institute, China Listed Company Environmental Responsibility Investigation Committee, Nature University and Environmental Research Institute by Source Enthusiasts in Fengtai District of Beijing) urged Datang to enhance their efforts in public information disclosure.
2. Greenpeace also published reports with an overview of Datang's development in the coal chemical industry. In the report, Greenpeace called on the companies, the financial sector and the policymaker to take into consideration the environmental and operational risks of the industry and reconsider the support for further development of the coal chemical industry in China.
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:The environmental impact had caused a significant impact on local residents since the beginning of the project in 2006, which lasted at least until 2014. The NGOs’ involvement raised public and government attention, while also requesting the company to be more transparent in its communication. However, it was unclear whether the affected populations received financial or other forms of compensation, as some farmers indicated that they only received some one-off compensation for the loss of land. Besides, the impact on groundwater and health can lead to long-term damage to the local communities.
Sources & Materials
Juridical relevant texts related to the conflict (laws, legislations, EIAs, etc)

Environmental quality standards for surface water (《地表水环境质量标准(GB 3838-2002)》)
[click to view]

Integrated wastewater discharge standard (《污水综合排放标准》(GB8978-1996) )
[click to view]

Emission Standard for Pollutants from Coal Industry (《煤炭工业污染物排放标准(GB 20426—2006)》)
[click to view]

[12] “大唐多伦煤化工成三废重灾区 危及京津水源,” 人民网, 13-Jul-2014. [Online]. Available: http://energy.people.com.cn/n/2014/0713/c71661-25274565.html. [Accessed: 30-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[1] “大唐发电旗下多伦煤化工项目因污染问题遭处罚,” Sina Finance, 13-Jun-2014. [Online]. Available: http://finance.sina.com.cn/chanjing/gsnews/20140613/131319405583.shtml. [Accessed: 04-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[13] F. Xing and K. Tong, “大唐多伦煤化工偷排致河中死鱼 村民称地下水如鼻涕,” 中国新闻网, 08-Oct-2014. [Online]. Available: http://finance.sina.com.cn/chanjing/gsnews/20141008/113820481099.shtml. [Accessed: 01-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[4] “多伦大唐煤化工,” 百度百科. [Online]. Available: https://baike.baidu.com/item/多伦大唐煤化工. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[5] “大唐煤化工难题:已投千亿 无一项目正式投产,” 21世纪经济报道, 24-Dec-2012. [Online]. Available: https://business.sohu.com/20121224/n361406897.shtml. [Accessed: 04-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[7] “5家环保组织尝试与央企大唐‘对话’----‘美丽内蒙’该如何保护?,” China Development Brief, 21-Nov-2013. [Online]. Available: http://www.chinadevelopmentbrief.org.cn/news-15907.html. [Accessed: 30-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[14] “能源巨头国企连续多年发生污染事故 大唐多伦煤化工项目多次污染滦河,” 能源大嘴, 06-Jun-2016. [Online]. Available: https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s?__biz=MzA4MjQ1NjEzNQ==&mid=2652800553&idx=1&sn=dd283d76cd6d726d7d01d405115d9293#rd. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[8] “大唐能化公司对五家环保组织公开信的回复,” Green Beagle Environmental Institute, 27-Nov-2012. [Online]. Available: http://www.bjep.org.cn/pages/Search/0-0?rid=2570&str=草原. [Accessed: 03-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[6] “#民间环保组织助力央企践行环境责任#,” Sina Blog, 26-Sep-2012. [Online]. Available: http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_7f8e88c0010139gx.html. [Accessed: 01-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[16] “大唐多伦煤化工项目管涌事故疑似造成近10万平方米土地污染,” 能见, 13-Jun-2016. [Online]. Available: https://www.nengapp.com/news/detail/646992. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[9] C. Zhao, “大唐发电回应‘环保门’:废渣场建设合法合规,” 每日经济新闻, 27-Nov-2012. [Online]. Available: https://finance.qq.com/a/20121127/000838.htm. [Accessed: 01-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[11] “大唐多伦煤化工再陷环保门 脱硫设施1年停运174天,” 证券时报, 14-Jul-2014. [Online]. Available: http://finance.sina.com.cn/chanjing/gsnews/20140714/020819690227.shtml. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[10] P. Guo and X. Liu, “大唐国际多伦煤化工‘环保门’再调查 ,” 民生周刊, 03-Jun-2013. [Online]. Available: http://news.bjx.com.cn/html/20130603/437777.shtml. [Accessed: 30-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[2] “锡盟煤化工产业发展现状的调研报告,” 锡林郭勒盟政府信息公开网, 28-Dec-2018. [Online]. Available: http://www.xlgl.gov.cn/xmxxgk/xsbgt/xxgkml/201812/t20181228_2174206.html. [Accessed: 04-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[3] X. Wu and Y. Zhao, “多伦煤化工公司:破茧重生,” 29-Dec-2018. [Online]. Available: http://www.china-cdt.com/dtwz/indexAction.ndo?action=showDoc&d=CA50CE59-AC7C-A773-AD63-ABD5DBEE1636&t=index_news. [Accessed: 04-Oct-2020].
[click to view]

[17] J. Zou, X. Jiang, and L. Dong, “大唐多伦煤化工污染背后:12次环保巡查 污染依然频发,” 新华社, 02-Jun-2016. [Online]. Available: http://finance.sina.com.cn/chanjing/gsnews/2016-06-02/doc-ifxsuypf4808958.shtml. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[15] Z. Boren, “China mulls moratorium on carbon intensive coal-to-chemical projects ,” Unearthed, 18-Jul-2016. [Online]. Available: https://unearthed.greenpeace.org/2016/07/18/china-government-to-ban-coal-to-chemical-projects/. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[18]S. Y. Ling, “China’s Datang sells coal-to-gas, coal-to-chemical operations,” S&P Global, 08-Jul-2014. [Online]. Available: https://www.spglobal.com/platts/en/market-insights/latest-news/coal/070814-chinas-datang-sells-coal-to-gas-coal-to-chemical-operations. [Accessed: 01-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[19] Y. Zhao, “大唐1元甩卖煤化工资产 去年巨亏43亿,” 新京报, 02-Jul-2016. [Online]. Available: http://finance.china.com.cn/industry/energy/mtdl/20160702/3794526.shtml. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[20] E. Ng, “Datang Group takes control of subsidiary’s loss-making coal and chemical assets,” South China Morning Post, 01-Jul-2016. [Online]. Available: https://www.scmp.com/business/companies/article/1983997/datang-group-takes-control-subsidiarys-loss-making-coal-and. [Accessed: 24-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[21]“Pipe Dreams - Datang’s failed coal chemical initiative, and the story of China’s coal chemical sector,” 21-Jan-2016. [Online]. Available: https://www.greenpeace.org/eastasia/publication/1800/pipe-dreams/. [Accessed: 21-Sep-2020].
[click to view]

[22] "啮噬我们草原的不只是资本!草原保护公益诉讼也是举步维艰!", CBCGDF, 18-Mar-2021. [Accessed: 10 June 2021]
[click to view]

[23] "绿会就大唐多伦煤化工蒸发塘坝体管涌事故向环保部申请信息公开", Read01, 24-Oct-2016. [Accessed: 10-June-2021]
[click to view]

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Contributor:EnvJustice, ICTA-UAB/BG
Last update02/08/2021
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