China to launch first national water census

Updated: 2011-03-18 22:24
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China will initiate the first-ever national water census from 2010 to 2012 with its fieldwork scheduled to be officially kicked off nationwide as of April 1, officials announced in Beijing on Friday.

From the day on, up to 800,000 well-trained surveyors including technical instructors will begin to visit target objects for investigation and registration in rural and urban areas across the Chinese mainland for data acquisition.

It will focus on the numbers of lakes and rivers, the conditions of various water conservancy projects, particularly irrigation zones, the protection of rivers and lakes, reservoirs and other water supply facilities and water sources including groundwater resources, according to officials and experts involved.

Program planning, pilot projects and training for the census was done in 2010. Fieldwork is slated to be carried out in full swing this year with result of the census to be released in 2012.

The survey, officially called “China Census for Water,” will cover rivers, lakes, water conservancy projects, water conservancy institutions and key and households water users in the Chinese mainland.

Addressing a launching ceremony, Chen Lei, minister of water resources and also senior official of a leading group responsible for the census under the State Council, China’s cabinet, said, the census will be conducted as a major part of well understanding China’s national situation to press ahead its water conservancy.

Development and improvement of water conservancy have been a key infrastructure for China to secure its food security, sustainability of national economy and fight against disasters including drought, floods, water and soil erosion.

The minister promised that the census would be carried out by law, with quality well controlled and intentional interference being eliminated during its data collecting, processing, and summarizing.

While appealing to all target objects to cooperate with census authorities, he made it clear that authorities would prevent falsification from being caused for the census.

“The legal interests of all the parties and individuals the census has involved should be protected by authorities without providing their records and documents to unrelated parties. “Result of the census would also not be used as basis to charge for water resources from those surveyed or the implementation of administrative management,” he said.