China to publish city rankings showing most and least polluted water

Source:Global Times Published: 2016/7/3 20:23:01

The Ministry of Environmental Protection will soon start publishing a list of the cities with the best and worst water quality every month in order to monitor the cities' pollution and progress.

The authorities will monitor the quality of rivers and lakes in 338 prefecture-level cities, using 21 different metrics to measure the levels of metals, harmful chemicals and other pollutants to form a City Water Quality Index.

The top 10 and bottom 10 cities will be announced on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis.

Xia Qing, former vice-dean of the Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences, said that water quality is closely related to climate and precipitation in addition to local industry, and therefore most cities in China's north will do poorly on this index.

The Haihe Basin is the most polluted area in China, and 91 percent of Hebei Province is in this area. Xia also believes that cities with the most polluted air are also likely to have the most polluted water, including cities in Hebei which are often shrouded in heavy smog.

Xia believes that people should be educated about water quality as it relates to their daily lives and this index should be understandable by members of the public.

Xia said that people need to understand that water pollution is linked to their drinking water. They should be shown what the government is doing to protect the quality of drinking water and to clean up highly contaminated water.

The ministry is soliciting public opinions, a process which will end on July 10.

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