China plans to strengthen water pollution controls on the Yangtze River, focusing especially on the protection of drinking water sources, the country's top environment authority said on Monday.
Along the Yangtze River, China has built 52 water quality monitoring stations at the provincial level, which could help the 11 provinces and municipalities involved conduct joint monitoring on 126 sections along its main stream and channels, according to the statement from the Ministry of Environmental Protection.
These provinces have also listed 32,000 zones on the main stream and channels where fisheries are forbidden, and another 160,000 existing fish farms will be shut down or relocated, said Zhang Bo, head of water quality management department under the ministry.
The ministry conducted a special inspection on drinking water sources along the river in October, which has exposed 399 issues, and all of the issues have been transferred to governments for further investigation and treatment, Zhang said.
In the 126 cities along the river, the ministry has drawn 319 drinking water sources, which require special protection, the ministry said.
In a bid to reduce water pollution in the river, the central government has issued a plan on environmental protection, which forbids any chemical industrial zones to be built in coastal regions within one kilometer of the river, Zhang said.