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Beijing confident of hitting clean water targets

Updated: 2007-01-31 11:30

Beijing is confident it can meet water cleanliness targets in time for the 2008 Olympics, a state newspaper reported on Tuesday.

The city now treated 90 percent of urban sewage properly and that rate would rise further this year with the completion of five more treatment plants, the China Daily cited Jiao Zhizhong, head of the Beijing Water Authority, as saying.

"We are confident that Beijing's water environment would reach, or even surpass, Olympic standards before the 2008 Olympic Games begin," Jiao said.

When it bid to host the Olympics, Beijing made commitments to improve the city environment and to stage the "Green Olympics".

Jiao said that all canals, lakes and moats within the city's greater urban area would be cleaned.

"This year we will ensure that the clean ones stay clean and continue treating the rest," he said.

Another problem arid Beijing faces is water shortages.

Jiao said 80 percent of urban homes had installed water-saving equipment and more farmland was being irrigated by less wasteful methods. "Beijing is doing remarkably well in reducing water consumption," he said.

By August 2008, when the Olympics open, Beijing will be getting an extra 300 million cubic metres of water from neighbouring Hebei province, Jiao said.