China's Water Shortage

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The Problem
China is a region that has experience substantial growth over the years in areas of industry, living standards, and population. But this success has resulted in the depletion of one of the greatest natural resources water. Industrial growth means an increase demand for water used in production processes and much of the water being used is not being reclaimed. A higher living standard means a greater demand for electricity that is lowering water levels in rivers used for generation. The population growth increases this nation's basic living need for water. Of China's 640 cities, 300 of them are suffering from inadequate water supplies (News Service Reports). Other issues related to water shortages within this nation are the insufficient management of this resource by government, including wastewater management and uneven distribution of river and rainwater; inadequate public awareness of environmental protection; and the overuse of underground water. Political and Economic Issues

China's legislative work to protect the environment and its resources did not begin until 1973 when they held the first national meeting on this issue (Wang). Since then the nation has established what appears to be extensive environmental legislation, including two laws addressing water pollution and four addressing water as an environmental resource. In 1979 the Environmental Protection law was developed and revised in 1989 to protect and improve the environment, prevent and control pollution and other public hazards, safeguard human health, and facilitate the development of socialist modernization. The Water Law established in 1988 was for the purpose of rationally developing, utilizing and protecting water sources. In 1991 the Water and Soil Conservation Law aided in the protection and rational utilization of water resources. The Basic Environmental Act in 2002 was established to raise the quality of the environment, preserve environmental resources, and pursue...
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