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The mobilization meeting for national detailed survey on soil pollution conditions held in Beijing
 

Li Ganjie highlights the detailed survey as a major move to acquire information on the national circumstances, and stresses that local governments and departments should act in line with the Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Soil Pollution, and earnestly organize the detailed survey, building on the survey data available and with the emphasis on agricultural lands and land uses by major industries and enterprises, in order to lay groundwork for effectively controlling soil environment risks and safeguarding the human health.

On Jul. 31, MEP, MOF, MLR, MOA, and NHFPC jointly convened a video conference in Beijing to make mobilizations and arrangements for the upcoming national detailed survey on soil pollution conditions. Minister Li Ganjie presented and delivered remarks at the conference, when he highlighted the detailed survey as a major move to acquire information on the national circumstances, and stressed that local governments and departments should act in line with the Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Soil Pollution, and earnestly organize the detailed survey, building on the survey data available and with the emphasis on agricultural lands and land uses by major industries and enterprises, in order to lay groundwork for effectively controlling soil environment risks and safeguarding the human health.

The ecological and environmental awareness and practices have experienced historic, transitional, and holistic changes since the 18th National Congress under the leadership of the CPC Central Committee, noted Li. The detailed survey on soil pollution is part of the major efforts to implement the action plan on fighting soil pollution, in order to promote ecological progress and safeguard national ecological security. It will lay the groundwork for introducing the category-specific management of agricultural lands, setting standards for the access to construction lands, treating soil contamination based on the pollution categories, land uses, and different stages, and improving the soil quality. Moreover, it will help control the environmental risks of soils, and protect the living environment and food from contaminated soils.

The Master Plan for the National Detailed Survey on Soil Pollution Conditions released by the above said five State departments last year specifies the purposes of the detailed survey as, by the end of 2018, to have determined the acreage and geographical distribution of the contaminated agricultural lands and their impact on the quality of farm produce, and by the end of 2020, to have found out the geographical distribution of contaminated sites from among the land uses of key industries and enterprises as well as their environmental risks.

For this purpose, efforts should be made in the following respects: a. have a correct understanding of the general train of thought and technical routes of the survey, and focus on determining the scope, defining the survey unit, and establishing and verifying the monitoring sites, in the survey on agricultural lands, and on gathering the enterprises’ basic information in the survey on major industrial land uses; b. use the survey data available and share information, in order to locate the nonattainment regions and heavy polluters; c. make full use of the expertise and technical resources of the environmental protection, land resources, agricultural, and health departments at provincial and prefectural levels in the survey on agricultural lands, and the specialized non-government institutions in the survey on industrial land uses; d. employ state-of-art technologies including the high-resolution remote sensing and imaging system, the “internet+” and database technologies, and best available analysis approaches; e. unify the plans, laboratory screening standards, evaluation standards, quality control standards, and timelines of the survey.

The detailed survey will be more focused and targeted than the general survey and other previous surveys, and the local governments and departments have made very thorough preparations for it, said Li. As a highly specialized and wide-ranging effort, the detailed survey requires close collaboration among different departments at all levels.

First, it is imperative to well organize and coordinate the upcoming survey and divide the responsibilities among governments and departments at all levels. The provincial/regional/municipal people’s governments will take the overall responsibility for the survey, improve the working mechanisms and provide resources, and the prefectural and county governments will check and confirm the designated monitoring sites within their respective administrative regions. The provincial level environmental protection departments will take a leading role and collaborate with other relevant departments, and the technical support organizations will offer technical guidance for the survey.

Second, it is imperative to wrap up the preparatory work and fully launch the survey as soon as possible. The provinces/autonomous regions, and municipalities may start the detailed survey by piloting it on agricultural lands of selected counties. Also, they should draw up a provincial implementation plan for the detailed survey soon and file it with the MEP, MLR, and MOA.

Third, it is important to establish a whole-process quality control system. The emphasis should be laid on the sampling and laboratory analysis stages to make sure the data are accurate and reliable. Data fraud is strictly prohibited.

Fourth, it is imperative to make well-thought schedules and complete the survey before deadlines. A briefing on the soil pollution will be compiled regularly to report the local progresses and share experience. The special funds dedicated to the survey will be used wisely.

Fifth, risk control will be conducted back to back with the detailed survey. Measures will be introduced to control soil pollution risks in areas suffering from serious contamination, and ultimately, establish a risk control framework for soil contamination.

The conference was chaired by Vice Minister Zhao Yingmin. Vice Minister of Agriculture Zhang Taolin, Deputy Chairperson of Health and Family Planning Wang Guoqiang, and relevant person-in-charge with Ministry of Land and Resources delivered remarks at the conference.

The heads of relevant internal departments and affiliated institutions of MEP, MOA, MLR, MOA, and NHFPC, and of the state laboratories for quality control attended the event at the main venue. The heads of the environmental protection, financial, land resources, agricultural, and health departments of all provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities, Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, as well as the heads of the environmental protection, land resources, and agricultural departments of prefectural and county governments observed the conference at local venues.

(This English version is for your reference only.In case any discrepancy exists between the Chinese and English context, the Chinese version shall prevail.)

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