Ministry of Environmental Protection of The People`s Republic of China

Ministry of Environmental Protection of The People`s Republic of China

MEP releases the 2014 Report on the State of Environment in China

MEP released to the media the “2014 Report on the State of Environment in China” (SOE) today. The SOE stated that in 2014, with the high attention paid by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council, China made positive progress in promoting ecological progress and reforming the ecological environment area, and made new strides in air, water, and soil pollution control. The annual task of reducing the total load of main pollutants was concluded successfully, the environmental protection continued to play a comprehensive role in optimizing development, and more efforts were directed towards the environmental legal system improvement, law enforcement regulation, and environmental risk management. The eco-environmental protection proceeded steadily, and nuclear and radiation safety was under control.  

The SOE indicated that the mean annual readings of the air quality indicators of 16 out of the 161 cities which already commenced the air quality monitoring in accordance with new standards attained such standards, and the remaining 145 failed. A total of 470 cities (districts, counties) across the country conducted precipitation monitoring, 29.8 percent of which observed acid rain, with acid rain frequency averaging out at 17.4 percent.

Water quality monitoring was conducted in 968 monitoring sections (sites) in 423 main rivers and 62 key lakes (reservoirs) under national surface water monitoring program. Among others, 3.4, 30.4, 29.3, 20.9, and 6.8 percent of those sections attained Grade Ⅰ, Ⅱ, Ⅲ, Ⅳ, and Ⅴwater quality standard, and 9.2 percent failed Grade Ⅴ standard. The main pollution indicators were CODCr, TP, and BOD5. Up to 329 cities at prefectural level or above conducted water quality monitoring at the centralized drinking water source areas. Among the 33.255 bn. t of source water taken, 31.989 bn. t attained water quality standard, accounting for 96.2 percent. Among the 4,896 groundwater monitoring sites, 10.8 percent was recorded with excellent water quality, 25.9 percent with good quality, 1.8 percent with fairly good quality, 45.4 with fairly poor quality, and 16.1 percent with extremely poor quality.  

The part of the entire sea area which failed the Grade Ⅳ seawater quality standard amounted to 52,280 km2 in the spring, 41,140 km2 in the summer, and 57,360 km2 in the autumn, and mainly distributed in offshore seawaters including Liaodong Bay, Bohai Bay, Laizhou Bay, Yangtze River estuary, Hangzhou Bay, Zhejiang coastal region, and Pearl River estuary. Among the 301 monitoring sites of the offshore seawaters under national monitoring program, 28.6 percent attained Grade Ⅰ seawater quality standard, 38.2 percent Grade Ⅱ standard, 7.0 percent Grade Ⅲ standard, 7.6 percent Grade Ⅴ standard, and 18.6 percent failed Grade Ⅴ standard. The main pollutants were inorganic nitrogen and activated phosphate. 

The area-wide acoustic environment quality and road traffic acoustic environment quality in urban areas deteriorated from last year. The attainment rate of acoustic environment quality of all sorts of functional areas was higher at day than at night. 

The national environment ionizing radiation level was within the fluctuation range of national background level. The overall electromagnetic field intensity was below the limits set by the State. 

The overall eco-environmental quality of the nation was rated “average” in 2013. In terms of ecological environment quality, 558 out of the 2,461 counties were rated “excellent”, 1,051 “good”, 641 “average”, 196 “fairly poor”, and 15 “poor”. The combined area of counties with “excellent” or “good” records of ecological quality accounted for 46.7 percent of the national terrestrial area, that of counties with “average” records took up 23.0 percent, and that of counties with “fairly poor” or “poor” records occupied 30.3 percent. 

By the end of 2013, there had been 646,168,400 ha. of agricultural lands across China, with net growth of farmland area equivalent to 4,900 ha. within the year. The soil erosion area totaled 2,949,100 km2 in China, accounting for 31.12 percent of the surveyed area. 

There are 208 mil. ha. of forest area in China, and the standing stock registers 15.137 bn. m3. 

The grassland area totals nearly 400 mil. ha., which is about 41.7 percent of national territorial area. The grasslands constitute the nation’s largest terrestrial ecosystem and eco-safety barrier. 

By the end of 2014, a total of 2,729 nature reserves of all sorts and at all levels had been built up, with a combined coverage around 146.99 mil. ha. The terrestrial area of those reserves had amounted to 142.43 mil. ha., accounting for 14.84 percent of the national terrestrial area. There had been 428 national nature reserves which spread around 96.52 mil. ha. 

The 2014 SOE was compiled by MEP, with contributions from other line ministries including MLR, MHURD, Ministry of Communications, MWR, MoA, NHFPC, NBS, SFA, CEA, CMA, NEA, and SOA. It is a public annual report which reflects the state of environment in China in 2014. 

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