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Minister Chen Lei calls for green development and highlights river chief system on the occasion of 2017 World Water Day and China Water Week

Today is the 25th World Water Day, and the 30th China Water Week publicity campaign also kicked off. The United Nations determines the wastewater as the theme of the 2017 World Water Day; the publicity theme of China Water Week is “to carry out the concept of green development and comprehensively promote river chief system”.


Green is the necessary premise for sustainable development, and reflects the pursuit of people for a better life. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping as the core has been attaching great importance to green development, places the construction of ecological civilization in a prominent position to achieve the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation, and made a series of major strategic deployments. General Secretary Xi Jinping repeatedly stressed that there is no substitute for eco-environment, and its protection means productivity and improvement of eco-environment means increase productivity. He requires that all relevant departments implement the new development concept and establish the strong sense that clean water and green mountains are invaluable assets to realize the new era of socialist ecological civilization.


Water is the control factor of ecological system, while rivers and lakes are important components of ecological space. Water governance are core elements for ecological civilization. In recent years, water authorities at all levels have been actively carrying out the concept of green development and working policy of “giving priority to water conservation, balanced development and taking systematic approach of water governance and making full play of roles of government and market.” They have also effectively implemented stringent water management system, action plans for water pollution control, water ecological restoration, accelerated improvement of modern water infrastructure network, and promoted water management and control towards a new stage.


The full implementation of river chief system is the inevitable requirement to promote ecological civilization, the effective measure to resolve complicated water problems, the fundamental way to maintain healthy rivers and lakes, the system innovation to guarantee national water security, and the major reform initiative by the CPC Central Committee. The 28th meeting of the leading group for comprehensive deepening reform of the CPC Central Committee presided by General Secretary Xi Jinping passed the document for full implementation of the river chief system. In the new-year greetings of this year, General Secretary Xi Jinping especially stressed that every river will have its river chief. Currently, 31 provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities and the Xinjiang production and Construction Corps all completed their working plans, and more than 20 provinces will nominate their river chiefs by the end of this year.


Heavy tasks, high requirements and great responsibilities are associated with full implementation of river chief system. We shall let every river with its own river chief and set up river chief system in the whole country by the end of 2018.


In order to achieve this objective, first we should raise awareness and make commitment to protect our precious resources. Second we should implement leader responsible system and make the role of river chief into full play. Third we should get to the root of the problem to solve river and lake pollution. Fourth we should highlight supervision, performance evaluation and accountability. Fifth we should strengthen coordination and make joint efforts to cherish and protect our rivers and lakes.