On the State of the Environment In China
In 2002, environmental quality in most marine area in China remained good in general. The area with seawater quality not reaching the standard for Grade I was about 174,000 square kilometers, basically the same as compared with the previous year. Of this, the areas with water quality reaching Grade II, Grade III, Grade IV and worse than Grade IV were 111,000, 20,000, 18,000 and 26,000 square meters, respectively. As compared with the previous year, the area with water quality worse than Grade IV reduced to some extent. Some parts of the offshore areas were still seriously polluted.
Water Quality in Offshore Area
In 2002, the pollution in the offshore
areas was alleviated to some extent. The area with seawater quality reaching
Grade I or II covered 49.7%, an increase by 8.3 percent as compared with
that in the previous year; The area with seawater quality reaching or
worse than Grade IV was 35.9%, decreasing by 10.5 percent. The main pollution
indicators in the offshore areas were inorganic nitrogen and activated
phosphates. Petroleum, COD and lead in some areas exceeded the standards.
In very few areas, heavy metals like copper, mercury and cadmium exceeded
Classification of Offshore Seawater Quality in 2002
Percentage of Seawater Meeting
Standard for Grade I,II in Four Major Oceanic Areas
In 2002, a total of 79 red tide incidents
were recorded over the entire marine area of China. The accumulated area
exceeded 10,000 square kilometers. Among these, 51 red tide cases were
found in East China Sea, with accumulated area exceeding 9,000 square
kilometers. 17 red tide cases were found in Yellow Sea and Bohai Sea,
with accumulated area near 600 square kilometers. 11 red tide cases were
found in South China Sea, with accumulated area about 540 square kilometers.
In some areas, the toxic red-tide algae
like alexandrium and Gymnodrium was detected for many times, and toxic
red tides were detected in small scale.
The characteristics of the red tide
incidents occured in 2002: The red tide emerged earlier and lasted for
longer time. Their areas were centralized, and the number of occurrence
increased. The peak period for red tide occurrence was from May to July.
The occurrence of red tide incidents in large areas concentrated in the
mouth of Yellow River and the coastal areas and offshore of Zhejiang and
Fujian. The species of red tide organisms were mostly skeletonema costatum,
noctiluca scintillans and prorocentrum triestinum. Red tide incidents
occurred in small area caused by mesodinium rubrum were found in Bohai
Sea and East China Sea.
Measures and Actions
"No Phosphorus" Action around Bohai Sea region
In the four provinces and municipality in conjunction with Bohai Sea, the program of banning the use of detergents containing phosphorus was comprehensively implemented. Since its implementation, the content of activated phosphates in the seawater of Bohai Sea declined to some extent, and no large red tide incidents occurred in Bohai Sea.
Establishment of local environmental monitoring stations in coastal areas
In order to strengthen the construction of environmental monitoring networks in the coastal areas, SEPA approved the establishment of 7 environmental monitoring stations in coastal regions of Dalian, Tianjin, Qingdao, Xiamen, Zhoushan, Shenzhen and Beihai, which were affiliated to the National Environmental Monitoring Station of China.
Weekly reporting of seawater quality of swimming places during the summer
From July to September in 2002, SEPA organized water quality monitoring at the seawater swimming places in major coastal cities, and issued 13 weekly reports on water quality of the seawater in swimming places.
Prevention and reduction of red tide disasters
The State Oceanic Bureau established
the red tide monitoring and control areas in 7 coastal provinces, and
conducted effective monitoring and early warning activities for prevention
and reduction of red tides. The economic losses caused by red tides were
significantly reduced. In Fujian province only, the economic losses decreased
by 90 million Chinese Yuan as compared with that in the previous year.
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