Ministry of China to introduce regulation to save water

2024-03-13 14:16:32 Sinokle


Workers feed fish at Liaoyang Petrochemical, a subsidiary of Petro-China, in Liaoyang, Liaoning province. Fish can live in processed wastewater from the plant. [Photo provided to China Daily]

China plans to introduce a national regulation for water conservation this year, according to the Ministry of Water Resources.

The country made progress in saving water last year thanks to a cross-departmental collaboration mechanism, the ministry said in a release on Thursday following a conference held under the mechanism.

The ministry, together with other departments, has established a quota system that caps total water usage, as well as water consumption intensity — the use of water for every unit of GDP — in provincial, prefectural and county-level areas, it said.

It said they also guided local authorities to set up minimum goals in utilizing unconventional water, which refers primarily to recycled and desalinated water.

While bringing in preferential policies to motivate water-saving, the country has also cracked down on projects with excessive water consumption, the ministry said.

To promote the development of the water conservation industry, China has allowed service providers with water-saving projects to enjoy green credits, it said.

Thanks to the incentive, such service providers contracted 204 water-saving projects across the country last year, with total investment exceeding 2.1 billion yuan ($292 million), it said. These projects are expected to help save almost 89.4 million cubic meters of water every year.

In the Yangtze River Economic Belt, the Yellow River Basin, as well as Hebei province and the municipalities of Beijing and Tianjin, 77 projects that failed to conserve water as required by national standards were suspended last year.

It also said that irrigation efficiency was enhanced on 1.6 million hectares of farmland, and almost 144,000 hectares of farmland were left fallow in the past year in areas where groundwater is over-exploited, including North China and the Tarim River Basin.

The cross-departmental collaboration mechanism, which involves 20 central government bodies including the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, was established in 2021, after the Central Committee for Deepening Overall Reform adopted a national action plan for water conservation in 2019.

Zhou Zheyu, an official with the National Office of Water Conservation, said government bodies under the cross-departmental collaboration mechanism will beef up water saving in the country, and one of the priorities is to strengthen institutions.

The ministry, together with other departments, plans to introduce a national regulation on water conservation.

"It will also make efforts to make all industrial and service companies with an annual water consumption of over 10,000 cubic meters covered by a management system that features planned water usage," he said.

Source: Chinadaily

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