China today released its first ever national pollution census, which cites pesticides and fertilizers as responsible for some of the worst environmental problems in the country.
Agricultural pollution has made Chao Lake in Anhui province deadly.
The census marks the first attempt by China to obtain a long-needed comprehensive picture of the country's pollution sources. It has far-reaching implications to China's effort to curb pollution emissions and prioritize environmental policies.
"It is only the first step. The Chinese government should use the statistics as the benchmark to prioritize the country's biggest pollution issues, review current measures and policies, and set up more stringent pollution control targets in the 12th five-year plan," Greenpeace Campaign Director Sze Pang Cheung said. "The government should also start monitoring and regulating important pollutants such as Persistent Organic Pollutants which have long-term negative impacts on human health and the environment."
Survey results show that agricultural pollution has become one of China gravest environmental crises.
"China needs to step up fight against the overuse of fertilizers and pesticides and promote ecological agriculture which has obvious advantages for human heath, environment, and sustainable development of agriculture. It appears that the comprehensive pollution data from the census has not been made accessible to the public. We urge the government to immediately establish a strong platform through which the public could easily access a wide range of pollution data.," he added.
Hans Xu: Media Officer, Greenpeace China
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Greenpeace reactive on China’s first national pollution census