China water pollution is worse than anyone would dare to believe. Add this to a major water shortage, and it’s a huge problem for the nation. According to a China Securities News report, China’s environmental agencies will spend 2 trillion yuan (US$328.3 billion) this year on water treatment.
The planned treatment includes wastewater treatment, recycling, and membrane technology to improve water quality by 30-50 percent.
Details about funding and dates of implementation are not mentioned in the report.
China’s population accounts for one fifth of the world’s total population, but has only 7 percent of the world’s water. China has a water shortage problem, particularly in Northern China where the per capita amount of water in some areas is less than that in the Middle East.
Currently, some of the water sources are also exposed to serious threats from pollution.
The 2012 official survey data showed that two fifths of China’s water is heavily polluted, and more than one fifth contains poisons, and is classified as Inferior V. Inferior V is water that has no value whatsoever, is unsuitable for drinking, raising fish, irrigation, or even industry use, and it is best not to touch it.
During an international groundwater forum, experts from the China Geological Survey Bureau mentioned that 90 percent of the groundwater in China suffered varying degrees of pollution, out of which 60 percent was seriously polluted.
In addition, around 1,700 water polluting incidents happen each year in China. Forty percent of China’s rivers are severely polluted. A large amount of water in China is still undrinkable.
This is not the first time that the Chinese government has invested heavily in water pollution treatment. Reuters reported in early 2013 that during the past five years, the Chinese government invested 700 billion yuan on water pollution, but with little success.
The investments in pollution control have increased year after year, but the increased control has only brought more serious pollution. The New Express newspaper once reported that China had contracted a “low efficiency” disease in environmental protection. Locally, the funds are misappropriated through corporate fraud, while environmental protection equipment lies dormant, and so on, thus China’s environmental protection policies and funds don’t get the job done.