Beijing Water

China’s drinking water situation grim; heavy pollution to blame

China Watch (Worldwatch Institute)
August 3, 2006

China will soon revise its national compulsory standards on drinking water quality. The indices for testing will rise from 35 to 107, and include organic pollutants and other substances caused by industrial pollution.

At a July 25 national meeting on legal enforcement of the protection of drinking water sources, China’s environmental authorities concluded that the country’s water quality situation remains grim, according to People’s Daily. Officials with the State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA), which organized the meeting, noted that industrial pollution accidents have been the major culprit behind poor drinking water safety in recent years. … At the July 25 meeting, Deputy Director Zhang Lijun claimed that the administration would tighten its supervision of polluting sources and wastewater discharge channels in areas harboring drinking water sources. In addition, China will soon revise its national compulsory standards on drinking water quality under the joint efforts of the Standardization Administration of China, the Ministry of Construction, and the Ministry of Health. The current standards, issued in 1985 before widespread industrialization took place in China, have only 35 indices for testing. The new regulation will increase that number to 107, covering organic pollutants and other substances caused by industrial pollution.

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