China / Society

China pledges more efforts to enhance water management

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-02-06 22:35

BEIJING - China's Ministry of Water Resources said it has established a new performance appraisal system to evaluate local governments on their management of water resources.

Chen Mingzhong, director of the department of water resources under the ministry, said China is committed to more efforts to ensure effective implementation of its water resources management system, which was put into place in 2012 and is the strictest-ever standard on water conservation and waste water treatment in the country.

Chen said heads of local governments will be held accountable in water resources management and conservation work.

Major indicators on limiting water exploitation, improving water use efficiency, and curbing water pollution will be incorporated into the assessment system for local governments' work, Chen said.

China faces a grave situation in water resources conservation. Two-thirds of its cities lack sufficient water and nearly 300 million rural residents lack access to safe drinking water. The country faces a national water shortage of over 50 billion cubic meters on average every year, the ministry's figures showed.

Moreover, about one-fifth of the country's rivers are so polluted that their water quality is rated Category V. China rates its water quality from Category I to Category V, with Category V being too toxic even to touch, according to the ministry.

Chen added that China will start implementing the performance assessment system in March.

Hot Topics