All the blast furnaces used to produce manganese-rich slag in Qinzhou in Guangxi province have been shut down as of Monday June 11, after an inspection team from the central government settled in the province earlier this month to review the rectifications previously required.
While most large-sized ferromanganese plants in Qinzhou had met environmental standard after previous rectifications, some small-sized ones still caused severe pollution.
The inspection team randomly checked four small-sized ferromanganese plants in the area on Saturday June 9 and found that all of them used substandard blast furnaces that were announced obsolete. Some of the blast furnaces were of only 13 m3.
The four plants used manganese ore as raw materials to produce manganese-rich slag and pig iron. None of them had decent factory buildings, related ancillary facilities, or desulfurization facilities.
Manganese-rich slag, as an intermediate product in smelting, has always been omitted in supervision as it does not belong to ferromanganese alloy. Whether those blast furnaces could resume operation after rectification remains unclear.