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China to reduce iron ore operations to combat smog and pollution

China is set to cancel a significant proportion of its iron ore mining industry, as the country looks to clamp down on carbon emissions and smog.

Lei Pingxi, Chief Engineer at the Metallurgical Mines’ Association announced that over 1,000 mining rights will be eliminated under the countrywide campaign against pollution, particularly small polluting mines.

“Some small miners who didn’t pay attention to environmental issues simply closed down temporarily to cope with inspections,” Lei said to Reuters.

“However, these small miners will be forced to upgrade their production processes in order to service, otherwise they will be cleared out.”

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The news comes after years of successive closure of iron ore mines throughout China, with the total figure of operating mines dropping significantly from a peak of well over 3,000 to close to 1,900 and of course with the recent announcement that figure will continue to fall.

In 2016 China’s iron ore output dropped 3 percent to 1.28 billion tonnes.

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