China Province to Spend $3.35 Billion on Water Projects

A northeastern Chinese province is planning to invest 20.9 billion yuan ($3.35 billion) this year on water-conservation projects as the world’s most-populous nation tries to ensure residential and industrial supplies.

The works in Heilongjiang province, which borders Russia, will highlight agricultural irrigation and drainage, improved flood protection and preserving water resources, the official Xinhua News Agency reported today, citing a provincial government work meeting.

The central government in China, beset by water and air pollution issues, plans to raise prices of water supplied to some conservancy projects and introduce tier pricing, according to a work report issued by the National Development and Reform Commission in March.

Water-conservation investments totaled 439.7 billion yuan in 2013, with 140.8 billion yuan from the central government and the rest from local governments, Water Resources Minister Chen Lei said in January.

Population and urbanization growth are pressuring water resources in China. The nation will accelerate planning for medium and large reservoirs, especially in the southwest, and is undertaking a plan to move 44.8 billion cubic meters of water a year from the south to the north, according to Chen.

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