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Beijing's groundwater level rises after 16 years

(People's Daily Online)    10:55, September 16, 2015
Beijing's groundwater level rises after 16 years
The South-to-North Water Transfer Project. (File photo)

Beijing's groundwater level has risen for the first time in 16 years, People's Daily Overseas Edition reported.

According to the data collected by the 885 groundwater level monitoring points of the city, Beijing's groundwater depth was 26.55m on July 31, 15 centimeters higher than the 26.7m on Jun. 30, with ground water storage increasing by 80 million cubic meters.

According to experts, Beijing's groundwater level will recover comprehensively thanks to the South-to-North Water Transfer Project: with water transferred from the south, the water shortage of Beijing has been relieved to some extent. Meanwhile, strict controlling of groundwater mining also contributes to the rise of the city's groundwater level.

Along with the rapid development of the city in recent years, Beijing has seen a population explosion. The permanent resident population of Beijing was 21 million in 2014, which was twice as high as that of 1999. Along with the increase of population, the water shortage occurs. Moreover, since 1999, Beijing has experienced many years of drought in a row.

In order to meet the demand, Beijing has overdrafted groundwater for many years. Statistics show that the groundwater level of Beijing keeps decreasing due to the exploitation of groundwater. In 1980, Beijing's groundwater depth was 6.7m; in 1998, the figure was 11.88m; and in 2014, nearly 26m.

Since the south water was supplied to Beijing last December, the water shortage has been effectively relived. Every day, nearly 2 million cubic meters of south water is sent to thousands of households in Beijing, accounting for 60 percent of the municipal water supply. By the end of this August, a total of 500 million cubic meters of south water has been transferred to Beijing and a total of 818 million cubic meters of south water is expected to be supplied this year.

Water transferred from the south has to some extent relieved the water shortage of Beijing and made it possible to close self-drilled wells. According to an official from Beijing Water Supply Bureau, Beijing will take strict measures to manage its water resource. By the end of 2020, all the self-drilled wells will be closed and the ground water will be better conserved. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Kong Defang,Bianji)

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