Report On the State of the Environment In China
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Solid Wastes

General Situation

In 2004, 1.20 billion tons of industrial solid wastes were generated across the country, 20.0% up against the previous year while the discharge of industrial solid wastes was 17.92 million tons, down by 7.7% compared with that of 2003. The amount of industrial solid wastes under integrated reuse totaled 680 million tons, resulting in an integrated utilization rate of 55.7%, which was on a par with that of the previous year. The amount of hazardous wastes generated was 9.63 million tons. 

Countermeasures and Actions

【Development of Relevant Laws, Regulations and Standards】 The 13th Session of the Standing Committee of the 10th NPC revised and adopted The Law of People's Republic of China on Prevention and Control of Pollution by Solid Wastes on December 29, 2004 and the law took effect on April 1, 2005. 

Measures on the Management of Operation License of Hazard Wastes was passed at the 50th Executive Meeting of the State Council on May 19, 2004, and the regulation went into effect on July 1, 2004. 

State Environmental Protection Administration successively issued such regulations as Technical Requirements for the Construction of Facilities for Centralized Incineration and Disposal of Medical Wastes (Trial), Technical Requirements for the Construction of Facilities for Centralized Incineration and Disposal of Hazardous Wastes (Trial) and Technical Requirements for the Construction of Facilities for Safe Landfill and Disposal of Hazardous Wastes in 2004. 

【Development of Solid Wastes Management Center at State and Provincial Level】 State Environmental Protection Administration printed and issued the Requirement for the Establishment of Solid Wastes Management Center. SEPA required all provincial environmental protection bureaus to prepare and submit a feasibility study report on the establishment of solid wastes management center. It organized related departments in completing The Feasibility Study Report on the Establishment of State and Provincial Solid Wastes Management Centers. 

【Environmental Management on Medical Wastes】 In the first half of 2004, State Environmental Protection Administration conducted investigations on the management and disposal of medical wastes as well as the construction and operation of disposal facilities in four provinces and ten cities including Hebei, Shanxi, Sichuan, Shannxi and Chongqing. In the second half of 2004, in cooperation with the Ministry of Health, SEPA launched a special inspection on the management of medical wastes and construction of facilities for centralized disposal of medical wastes in each province, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the State Council. 

【Management of Imported Wastes】 State Environmental Protection Administration further strengthened environmental management of imported wastes in 2004 and approved 480 enterprises in 29 provinces as designated enterprises to process and utilize waste hardware electric appliances, waste wires and cables and waste electric motors. It issued the Circular on Strengthening the Approval and Management of the Import of Restricted Wastes to further restrict the approved volume of imported wastes and import ports, intensify on-spot inspection of enterprises applying for the import of certain wastes with high environmental risks such as waste molasses, calx and debris with the concentration of vanadium pentoxide exceeding 10%. It has improved the management list for imported wastes. The State Environmental Protection Administration, the Ministry of Commerce, General Administration of Customs and General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the PRC jointly issued the third batch of the Lists of Wastes as Raw Materials to be Restricted to Import

In 2004 SEPA approved the import of a total of 23.42 million tons of restricted wastes as raw materials, 63% up compared with that of the previous year. The actual import of wastes totaled 10.53 million tons, up by 17.9% against 2003. Wastes approved to be used for raw materials under automatic permission amounted to 57.82 million tons and the actual import amount was 22.55 million tons. 

【Implementation of International Conventions】 The Seventh Conference of the Parties to Basel Convention on the Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal was held in Geneva, Switzerland from October 25-29, 2004. The theme of this meeting was "Partnership Meeting the Challenge of Global Wastes". China sent a delegation to the meeting and elaborated China's view on related issues. 

The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants was ratified at the 10th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the 10th NPC on June 25, 2004. The Convention went into effect in China on November 11, 2004. State Environmental Protection Administration has started to implement the Convention in cooperation with related departments. 

The Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade (Rotterdam Convention for short) was ratified at the 13th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the 10th NPC on December 29, 2004. The Chinese delegation attended the first Conference of the Parties to Rotterdam Convention at Geneva, Switzerland during Sep. 20-24, 2004. 

【Activities on Urban Environmental Sanitation and Cleanup】 A total of 2.753 billionm2 road area were under regular cleanup during 2004, 495 million m2 of which was cleaned by mechanic means, taking up 17.99%, 1.76 percentage points up than 2003. The amount of domestic refuse and excrement cleared and transported away in 2004 totaled 340 billion tons. In medium and large sized cities, daily refuse and excrements could be basically usually cleared away on the same day. 

Fresh Water Environment

Marine Environment

Atmospheric Environment


Solid Wastes


Arable Land / Land Resources




Climate and Natural Disasters

Environmental Management