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CCTV9英语新闻:People in Zhejiang call for cleaner rivers

The ministry of environmental protection has recently revealed that the country’s surface waters are lightly contaminated in general. Nearly 60 percent of underground waters are polluted or extremely polluted. In east China’s Zhejiang province, people have been pushing for better water quality by inviting local officials to swim in those polluted rivers.

The deteriorating water quality in rivers are becoming more concerning in China.

Puyangjiang river is called "the mother river" of Pujiang people. But one year ago, it was hard to imagine anyone could go for a swim there. The river was highly polluted by the local crystal manufacturers’ waste water.

Starting from April 2013, Pujiang government has been taking measures to reduce pollution.

"By August 2013 we had eliminated the ’white milk rivers’ caused by the chemical discharge from producing crystals. By the end of March this year, we had cleaned the rubbish in most rivers. We plan to clean the black and smelly rivers by the end of June. Our final goal is to let people be able to swim in Puyangjiang river again," said Ding Zheng, deputy party secretary of Pujiang County, Zhejiang Province.

In a year time, 18,000 crystal manufacturers have been closed down. Now only 1,700 producers remain. They are required not to discharge waste water into rivers.

"We use filters to purify the water and then we cycle use the water. Now we don’t discharge water. If any factory breach the regulation, it will be shut down. Although now we have to pay 10 to 20 thousand yuan more every month, we won’t take the risk," said Wang Shudong, general manager of Dongzhou Crystal(Pujiang).

The water’s ecological environment is gradually being restored. The banks along Puyangjiang river become a nice place to go for the local residents.

"After the measures being taken, the water is much better now. Since last year, we could do fishing here again," Pujiang resident Zhao Haiying said.

"It’s a big change. Now I ride bike along here in the morning," Pujiang resident Zhou Shunsheng said.

Some facilities for swimming including a small changing room are under construction. The wish of swimming in river is becoming feasible for people in Pujiang.

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