(October 12, 2013) This Economist report looks at the gravity of China’s water crisis, once summed up by Wang Shucheng, a former water minister as: “To fight for every drop of water or die: that is the challenge facing China.”
(February 6, 2013) When Zhao Feihong, an expert on water quality in Beijing, revealed last month that she didn’t drink the city’s tap water herself, and had not for the past 20 years, the news shredded what little public confidence remained in the capital’s drinking water supply. Hasty reassurances from city authorities in an effort to calm renewed concern, only served to heighten suspicion. Many believe that if someone in Zhao’s position, as well as her husband – another water expert and a public official – did not consider Beijing’s tap water fit to drink, why should they?
(October 21, 2011) China’s officials have admitted that the nation’s water supplies are dangerously polluted, and pledged to spend four trillion yuan on water conservation projects over the next decade. But money isn’t the problem; despite hundreds of billions of yuan already spent, pollution is only getting worse.
(October 6, 2011) Golf, the “green opium”, is getting more and more popular in China as a symbol of wealth. New courses continue to be built, despite an official ban, exacerbating China’s urban water shortages.
(May 20, 2011) China’s South-North Water Diversion project may have little water to spare for Beijing.
(May 6, 2011) Beijing really is trying to turn its water dilemma around. This Circle of Blue – Reporting the Global Water Crisis spotlight looks at what action the city’s municipal government is taking to reverse the capital’s water crunch but finds, in spite of acting with speed and authority, current measures are not fast or strong enough. Zhang Junfeng, a Beijing-based engineer and environmental activist, who has been researching Beijing’s water crisis for years, tells Circle of Blue the government still doesn’t clearly recognize the true extent of its problem and seems to think that as long as the country’s GDP is growing, the capital “can just buy the water” it needs. Not realizing that without water, hoped-for growth will falter.
(May 5, 2011) Beijing’s water shortage is one of the main factors thwarting the region’s sustainable economic growth, say bankers who have joined environmentalists in sounding the alarm over the city’s “chronic water deficit.”
(May 4, 2011) The Beijing municipal government will tighten controls on water consumption by enterprises this year to ensure they continue to economize on water usage, a Beijing Water Authority official said Tuesday.
(March 27, 2011) The quality of China’s tap water was raised on World Water Day. Reports and statements by professionals all point to a drinking water crisis.
(February 21, 2011) South China Morning Post reports on the Chinese government’s first national water plan. Probe International executive director Patricia Adams tells the Post why the plan will fall short.
(February 17, 2011) The latest edition of The Economist featured an article on the golf course building frenzy that is taking place in Beijing, despite catastrophic water shortages. Below is an excerpt of The Economist piece, and links to related stories.
(February 17, 2011) Beijing’s golf craze continues apace. The government’s ban on building new courses is flouted left and right while the city faces a severe water shortage.
(January 17, 2011) As Beijing suffers through its decades-long drought—with no precipitation for the last ten weeks—officials think it wise to use water from nearby lakes to provide residents with what is becoming a novel experience: snowfall.
(January 11, 2011) Wang Jian, who studies Beijing’s water consumption for the NGO Green SOS, estimated that city could save 190 million cubic meters of water annually if residents used it less extravagantly. That figure is double the capacity of the Guanting Reservoir.
(November 9, 2010) Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Probe International’s Executive Director Patricia Adams calls recent plans to pump raw sea water thousands of miles from the coast to the deserts of Xinjiang uneconomic and impractical—and one that only a government undisciplined by markets and public oversight would ever contemplate, let alone implement.