WUHAN, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- Legislators in central China's Hubei Province passed a rule to better protect the Yangtze, the country's longest river facing environmental challenges.
Construction of new petrochemical and coal chemical plants will be limited along the main stream of the Yangtze, while no new projects that would discharge pollutants into the river should be allowed, according to the rule, which was approved on Saturday by the provincial people's congress, the local legislature, at its annual meeting.
In addition, it underscored that enterprises that fail to meet pollution emissions standards must be "shut down resolutely."
The rule also said that boundaries should be set for exploitation of the Yangtze's water, water usage efficiency and pollution emissions into the river.
Local officials' environmental track record will be linked to their performance assessments, according to Zhou Shuihua, chief engineer of the provincial environmental protection department.
Hubei has the longest section of the Yangtze, with 1,061 kilometers of the river frontage.
A national plan to boost the development of the Yangtze River Economic Belt, published in September 2016, named environmental protection and restoration as paramount tasks.