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5 New National Standards for Drinking Water and the Reform of Policies Controlling Pollutant Discharge

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Chapter Summary

The new national standard for drinking water has posed challenges for China's pollutant discharge control policies. There are design loopholes in the policy for managing industrial nonpoint sources (NPSs), urban sewage treatment plants, medical organizations, and hazardous waste, in addition to defects in controlling and managing landfills, large-scale livestock/poultry farms, urban runoff, rural domestic NPSs, and agricultural NPSs. It is recommended to: take pollutant discharge permits as the primary tool for water pollution prevention and control, and define discharge limits based on technology and water quality for each source of pollution; formulate guidelines for developing water pollutant discharge standards, and differentiate discharge standards based on technologies from the ones based on water quality; create a pretreatment system for urban sewage treatment plants; issue policies managing rural sources of pollution; restrict the use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers in agricultural production; and manage waste in strict accordance with laws and regulations.

Keywords: China's pollutant discharge control policies; industrial nonpoint sources (NPSs); medical organizations; national standard for drinking water; Urban Sewage Treatment Plants



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