Expert calls for water price overhaul

Updated 2017-03-22 10:31:11 China Daily

The current pricing system is hampering the formation of a water-saving culture in China, according to E20 Environmental Platform, an environmental protection services platform.

In China, a large portion of the water price is paid by the government, rather than the users, said Xue Tao, the deputy head of E20.

Xue said that means the general public have little awareness of the scarcity of water and leads to rampant waste.

The pricing system also stands in the way of introducing alternative water resources such as reclaimed water and desalinated sea water as users are reluctant to pay a reasonable share for what has been a public service for a long period.

“It is unfair that polluters do not bear the environmental cost while those who save water do not get any benefits,” Xue said.

The same rule applies in industrial water use, he said.

“It is imperative that environmental cost is added into the production cost to increase water use efficiency.”

The challenge is to upgrade the industrial sector and phase out water-intensive production, a task the government cannot perform alone and requires market forces.

A regional gap is seen in renovating the industrial sector, Xue said.

In coastal regions, such as the Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta, where a large number of talents gather and high standards in environmental protection are established, the industrial sector has been largely renovated and upgraded.

It is a different case in regions such as Hebei province where traditional industries are losing momentum while new industries have not yet been established. This is related to the region's cultural and natural environments, appeal to talents, and the services provided by government.

Although home to two of the world's longest rivers, Yellow River and Yangtze River, China's fresh water resource per capita is only one quarter of the global average, according to the Ministry of Water Resources.

And the fresh water resources are unevenly distributed, with more than 80 percent in the south. In 2014, over half of the country's 600 cities faced water shortages, with more than 100 severely lacking water.

To quench the thirst of these cities, water diversion projects such as the South-to-North Water Diversion Project, have been built.

Also in the News

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time
Showbiz2016/06/16 13:58January 22 2018 06:42:41

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time

Attending Shanghai International Film Festival, Nicole Kidman talks about her role in "Grace of Monaco".

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts
Also in the News2014/05/01 12:16January 22 2018 06:42:41

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'
Also in the News2014/04/18 13:18January 22 2018 06:42:41

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'

Hollywood star Johnny Depp's speech in the upcoming new film "Transcendence" has been disclosed on Friday, April 11th.

Most Watched

China World Business Sports Showbiz Audio
C4 My Chinese Life The Sound Stage China Revealed Showbiz Video Travel Video
China World Fun Travel Entertainment Sports
Beijing Shanghai Guangzhou
Live Music Opera & Classical Movies Traditional Shows Exhibitions
Learn Chinese:
Chinese Studio Living Chinese Everyday Chinese Just For Fun Chinese Culture Buzzwords