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China Issues Report on State of Environment in 2000

Xinhua, 5 June 2001

BEIJING, June 5 (Xinhua) -- China said Tuesday it basically realized its goals set for environmental protection in 2000 as it had initially curbed the trend of environmental pollution aggravation and improved the air quality in major cities and regions by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, the situation of pollution remains grave, says a report on the State of the Environment in China, issued by the State Environmental Protection Administration Tuesday to mark the International Environment Day.

According to the report, the concentration of main air pollutants in cities around the country continued to decline in 2000, and the coverage and frequency of acid rains were stabilized.

The pollution of surface water has been considerably controlled, while the water quality degradation in the three major rivers of Haihe, Huaihe and Liaohe and three major lakes of Taihu, Chaohu and Daianchi has been basically curbed.

The offshore marine water quality has been generally improved, with the pollution along the coast of the Bohai Sea alleviated and that in the East China Sea slightly aggravated, the report says.

Traffic noise in key cities was controlled within a level of slight noise pollution, and the radioactive environment quality is good across the country.

However, air pollution in Chinese cities remains serious. The number of cities with air quality up to the national standard Level II accounts for less than one-third of the total, says the report.

The pollution of surface water is universal in the country, particularly those river sections that flow through cities were contaminated by organic pollutants.

Underground water is polluted, in addition to the lowering water level, according to the report.

All this has intensified the conflicts between water supply and demand, and the trend of ecological degradation has not been effectively controlled, says the report.