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Despite an overall improvement in the country's environment, there is still "serious" water pollution and rural environmental deterioration, a report said.
The report by the Ministry of Environmental Protection provides an overview of the nation's environmental situation last year.
It was released to Wednesday to coincide with World Environment Day today.
The report said water quality of the Yangtze and Pearl rivers is "fairly good". Songhua River, which was polluted by a chemical spill at the end of 2005, is "slightly polluted". The Yellow and Huaihe rivers are moderately polluted, while the Liaohe and Haihe rivers in the north are "seriously contaminated".
It said the main arteries of big rivers remain relatively healthy, but their numerous tributaries and lakes are severely contaminated.
Yin Fucai, deputy director of the Anhui provincial environmental protection bureau, blame the pollution on rapid economic development and insufficient waste treatment facilities.
The report said the rural environment faced the double threat of industrial pollution and ecological deterioration. Pollutants from households, fertilizers, factories, and mines are all growing in the countryside.
Drinking water is not safe and ecological deterioration is accelerating, the report said.