China cracks down on ecological damage through environmental inspections

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, July 7, 2022
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China has implemented two rounds of nationwide inspections on ecological conservation and environmental protection in seven years and tackled problems in multiple fields, an official said Wednesday.

Aiming to solve environmental problems closely related to people's lives, China accepted and handled 287,000 complaints from the public during the inspections and has made 285,000 rectifications so far, Vice Minister of Ecology and Environment Zhai Qing told a press conference.

These inspections have a particular focus on typical problems. Some 262 cases have been released to the public, of which nearly half relate to pollution and weak links in environmental infrastructure, and 33.2 percent are in the field of ecology and sustainable development.

"When choosing typical cases, we paid special attention to problems causing severe pollution with pressing concerns of the people, such as malicious discharge of pollutants into waters and illegal dumping of large amounts of industrial waste in rivers," Zhai said.

"We also stressed acts that harm the ecology and hamper sustainable development," he added, giving examples including illegal construction in protected areas, unlawful land reclamation at seas and lakes, deforestation for housing, and illegal mining.

Chinese central authorities started the scrutiny in late 2015 and finished the first round of inspections at the local level by 2018.

In the second round, teams inspected over 30 provincial-level regions, two government departments, and six centrally administered state-owned enterprises from 2019 to the first half of 2022.

Some 95 percent of the 3,294 problems revealed in the first round of scrutiny and its review period have been rectified, Zhai noted. He said half of the 1,227 issues already found in the second round of inspections have also been solved. 

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