Water 'tops list' of Chinese environmental problems

Water pollution and scarcity are seen as more pressing than all other environmental concerns by the Chinese public.

A poll carried out by water US-based awareness charity Circle of Blue suggested that people living in China are less concerned about climate change than they are about water.

It also shows that most people do not feel that they can make a difference themselves, and that the Government rather than individuals or industry is responsible for ensuring clean water supplies.

Industrial pollution and inadequate sewage treatment topped the list of water problems flagged up by Chinese respondents.

The global poll quizzed 1,000 people from 15 countries, with 500 of those individuals from six of the countries asked more in depth questions.

"We found very significant concern among the Chinese people about water quality and access to clean water," said Rob Kerr, one of the survey's principal researchers.

"The data show that the Chinese are aware of the condition of their waters and understand action is needed to improve conditions."

Carl Ganter, Circle of Blue director, said: "We're finding that people around the world are awakening to global water challenges such as scarcity and pollution.

"The trend here is that as people awake to the problem, they are not only seeking solutions, they want to know more and how to be a part of the solution. China is at so many crossroads and the public and political climates are changing rapidly."

Sam Bond


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