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UPDATED: 10:22, July 14, 2004
Environmental quality stable in general: report
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The Annual Report on Environmental Management and Comprehensive Improvement in Key Cities for Environmental Protection in 2003, released Tuesday by the State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA), indicates that China's environmental quality is stable in general.

In 2003 the key environmental protection cities had an average environmental protection investment accounting for 2.43 percent of the annual GDP, increasing by 0.14 percentage points over the previous year. Centralized treatment rate of urban sewage, decontamination rate of domestic refuse and centralized treatment rate of dangerous wastes increased by 10.68 percent, 1.78 percent and 12.06 percent respectively. Green coverage rate of built-up areas reached an average of 36.17 percent increasing by 0.68 percentage points over 2002.

The report also points out that currently air pollution in some cities is still very serious. The report for the first time published the ranking of 113 key environmental protection cities in terms of comprehensive air pollution index. The top ten cities with the most serious air pollution are: Linfen, Yangquan, Datong, Shizuishan, Sanmenxia, Jinchang, Shijiazhuang, Xianyang, Zhuzhou and Luoyang. The annual median of nitrogen dioxide concentration daily value in some cities grew somewhat. Among them cities such as Haerbin, Nanjing, Guangzhou, Xi'an and Yinchuan had an appreciable increase.

Moreover environmental protection investment in some key environmental protection cities was apparently not adequate and their environmental protection infrastructure was rather vulnerable. In 2003 cities with a low treatment rate of urban domestic sewage were: Changchun, Haerbin, Wuhan, Zhanjiang, Beihai, Chongqing and Lhasa. Cities with a low decontamination rate of domestic refuse were: Haerbin, Urumqi and Guiyang.

By People's Daily Online

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