SCIO briefing on strengthening eco-environment protection for a beautiful China
Beijing | 10 a.m. July 27, 2023

The State Council Information Office held a press conference in Beijing on Thursday about strengthening eco-environment protection for a beautiful China.


Huang Runqiu, minister of ecology and environment


Xing Huina, deputy director general of the Press Bureau of the State Council Information Office (SCIO) and spokesperson of the SCIO

Read in Chinese


Mr. Huang Runqiu, minister of ecology and environment 


Ms. Xing Huina, deputy director general of the Press Bureau of the State Council Information Office (SCIO) and spokesperson of the SCIO


July 27, 2023

Xing Huina:

Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. Welcome to this press conference held by the State Council Information Office (SCIO). This is the 21st briefing in the series "Embarking on the New Journey - A Government Perspective." Today, we have invited Mr. Huang Runqiu, minister of ecology and environment, to brief you on strengthening eco-environment protection for a Beautiful China, and to take your questions.

Now, I'll give the floor to Mr. Huang Runqiu for an introduction.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you, Ms. Xing. Friends from the media, ladies and gentlemen, good morning. I'm very glad to meet you here. On behalf of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE), I like to begin every press conference by expressing gratitude to friends from the media and today is no exception. You have supported ecological conservation and eco-environment protection over the years. Thank you for your hard work. This morning, I'll brief you on strengthening eco-environment protection for a Beautiful China.  

Protecting the eco-environment will benefit generations to come. On July 17 and 18, after five years, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) held the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection again in Beijing. General Secretary Xi Jinping attended the conference and delivered an important speech, demonstrating that the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core has always paid high attention to eco-environment protection and ecological conservation. This conference is of great importance. It took place in the first year when we fully implemented the guiding principles of the 20th CPC National Congress and at a critical time as China embarked on a new journey to build itself into a modern socialist country. It can be said that it is a new important milestone in the field of ecological conservation.

The conference has explored new ways of developing Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization, provided well-conceived answers to a series of important theoretical and practical questions on ecological conservation on the new journey of the new era, and systematically outlined major tasks and strategic measures for comprehensively building a Beautiful China. It has again declared to the world China's firm determination to pursue a model of sound development featuring improved production, higher living standards and healthy ecosystems.  

General Secretary Xi Jinping's important speech at the conference represents a new interpretation and development of Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization, and serves as a program of action and sound guideline as the Party comprehensively advances the building of a Beautiful China on the new journey of the new era. The main contents of the speech can be summarized as four major transformations, five major relationships, six major tasks and one major requirement.  

The four major transformations fully sum up the remarkable ecological conservation achievements secured in the new era. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, significant transformations from remediation of major areas to systematic governance, from passively responding to ecological issues to taking proactive actions to address them, from a participant to a leader in global environmental governance, and from practical-exploration-based conservation to the one with theoretical guidance have been secured in ecological conservation. The achievements are impressive and have become a significant symbol of the historic achievements and changes the Party and the country have made in pursuit of its cause. These accomplishments have been made under the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization and in turn, have enriched and improved the Thought, which has fully reflected the decisive significance of establishing Comrade Xi Jinping's core position on the CPC Central Committee and in the Party as a whole and establishing the guiding role of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era.

The five major relationships signify that the Party's understanding of the laws regarding ecological conservation has been further deepened and improved. A new stage and new situation call for the fulfilment of new tasks. In order to continue to advance ecological conservation, we must properly handle the relationships between high-quality development and high-level protection, between tackling key challenges and coordinated governance, between natural rehabilitation and artificial restoration, between external pressure and internal motivating power, and between the dual carbon reduction goals and our independent decisions. The five major relationships are both summaries of practical experience and theoretical generalizations, containing rich values and methodologies and full of profound philosophical thinking, as well as providing a powerful ideological tool for promoting the country's modernization featuring harmony between humanity and nature through the building of a Beautiful China. 

The six major tasks are comprehensive strategic deployments to conserve the ecology and build a Beautiful China. The next five years are critical to building a Beautiful China. We will go deep in a bid to prevent and control pollution, accelerate the green and low-carbon transformation of our development mode, make efforts to improve the diversity, stability and sustainability of the ecosystem, actively and steadily promote carbon emissions peaking and carbon neutrality, hold the security bottom line of building a Beautiful China, and improve the support system for building a Beautiful China. These six major tasks are significant strategic arrangements made to implement the major strategic deployments of the 20th CPC National Congress and aim to achieve the building of a Beautiful China by 2035 and related goals in the next five years.

The one major requirement is to uphold and strengthen the Party's overall leadership in the field of ecological conservation. The previous practices have shown that the Party's leadership is the fundamental guarantee for making greater progress in eco-environment protection and ecological conservation. Facing the new situations, issues and challenges regarding the ecological conservation on the new journey, we must continue to enhance the Party's overall leadership and firmly shoulder the political responsibility in this regard.

Friends from the media, as the country's economic and social progress has entered a phase of ever-accelerating green and low-carbon high-quality development, ecological conservation is still under multiple pressures and has a lot of difficulties to overcome. The eco-environment departments will take studying, publicizing and implementing the important speech of General Secretary Xi Jinping and the guiding principles of the conference as a major political task. We will further gain a deep understanding of the decisive significance of establishing Comrade Xi Jinping's core position on the CPC Central Committee and in the Party as a whole and establishing the guiding role of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. We will also uphold Comrade Xi Jinping's core position on the CPC Central Committee and in the Party as a whole and uphold the Central Committee's authority and its centralized, unified leadership, firmly implement Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization, and open a new chapter in eco-environment protection on the new journey to build China into a great country and to achieve national rejuvenation.

That's all for my introduction. Thank you.

Xing Huina:

Thank you, Mr. Huang. The floor is now open to questions. Please identify the media organization you represent before asking questions.


People's Daily:

General Secretary Xi Jinping stressed the importance of properly handling several key relationships when continuing our efforts in ecological conservation at the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection. The first is the relationship between high-quality development and high-level protection. Mr. Huang, how should we understand this relationship? What has the Ministry of Ecology and Environment done in this regard, and what will be done in the future? Thank you. 

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. In my view, reconciling the relationship between development and protection in the ecological environment field is a difficult and permanent global issue. General Secretary Xi Jinping emphasized that development plans must be made on the basis of a harmonious coexistence between humanity and nature. High-level environmental protection should help China continuously create new driving forces and new strengths for development. High-quality development and high-level protection reinforce each other. Ecological protection should be integrated into implementing the new development philosophy, building a new development paradigm, and promoting high-quality development. First, high-level protection underpins high-quality development and is integral to high-quality development. Development that does not incorporate environmental protection does not align with the new development philosophy or high-quality development. Second, high-level protection can guarantee high-quality development, upholding the security bottom line through various measures, such as a more region-specific approach to environmental management and environmental impact assessment. Third, by synergizing the reduction of pollution and carbon emissions and improving environmental standards, high-level protection can press for the transformation and upgrading of industrial, energy and transportation structures, and thus boost high-quality development. Moreover, high-quality development through policy tools like increased fiscal investment, the development of green finance, and compensation mechanisms for ecological conservation can accelerate the construction of ecological protection programs and the development of environmental protection industries, thereby boosting high-level protection. 

In recent years, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment has made efforts in the following aspects to advance high-quality development and high-level protection. 

First, we have enhanced ecological pollution prevention at the source. We have advanced a region-specific approach to environmental management, establishing about 40,000 units for environmental management, thereby setting a bottom line for high-quality development. As we improve our services for environmental impact assessment for various projects to boost socio-economic development, we carry out strict management on eco-environmental access, holding the security bottom line of high-quality development. We improved the laws, regulations, and standards regarding the ecological and environmental protection, enhanced supervision and law enforcement, and maintained a tough stance on cracking down on projects with high energy consumption, high emissions, and low efficiency. By the end of 2022, China had eased excess capacity and closed down outdated production facilities equating to about 300 million metric tons of steel, 400 million metric tons of cement, and 150 million weight cases of plate glass.

Second, we have focused on synergizing the reduction of pollution and carbon emissions. We have made efforts to improve the integration of environmental quality enhancement and carbon emission reduction, adjusting industrial structures to reduce emissions. The number of coal-fired boilers and furnaces across the country has been reduced from around 500,000 to less than 100,000 currently. Consequently, coal consumption has been reduced by over 400 million metric tons. Coal for non-industrial sectors has been replaced with cleaner energy in the power supply to around 37 million households in north China's rural areas, saving more than 70 million metric tons of coal for non-industrial sectors. Coal-fired power plants with a total capacity of 1.03 billion kilowatts have achieved ultra-low emissions. Meanwhile, 680 million metric tons of steel production capacity is in the process of achieving or has already achieved ultra-low emissions. We have also removed over 30 million old and high-emission vehicles from the roads.

Third, we have launched major programs for ecological and environmental protection. We have intensified our efforts to enhance the construction of environmental infrastructure, established pilot projects focused on the eco-environment-oriented development (EOD) mode, and fostered environmental protection industries. Last year, the revenue of national environmental protection industries reached 2.22 trillion yuan, proving these industries to be a crucial component of the green economy. We also expedited the treatment of foul-smelling and polluted bodies of water in urban areas, restored urban water ecosystems, and eradicated such bodies of water in cities at or above the prefectural level. These improvements enhanced not only the ecological environment but also the quality of urban life, thereby helping us achieve high-quality development.

Fourth, we have fostered new pacesetters for green development. We have advanced the ecological and environmental protection for implementation of major regional development strategies, including the integrated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region and the development of the Yangtze River Economic Belt. Efforts have been made to improve regional coordination and establish a joint control mechanism to ensure synchronized protection and control. We have promoted ecological progress through examples. For instance, we have designated 468 ecological civilization demonstration zones in six rounds and 187 innovation bases for practicing the principle that lush mountains and lucid waters are invaluable assets. We continue to encourage various regions to explore innovative approaches to green, low-carbon and high-quality development.

Going forward, we will further implement the guiding principles from important speeches by General Secretary Xi Jinping and effectively deal with the relationship between high-quality development and high-level protection. We will coordinate industrial structural adjustment, pollution control, environmental protection, and climate change mitigation. We will prioritize ecological conservation, advance green and low-carbon development, and promote the efficient and intensive use of resources, so as to support high-quality development with a high-quality ecological environment. Thank you.

21st Century Business Herald:

The report to the 20th CPC National Congress noted that the goal of building a Beautiful China will be largely accomplished by 2035. What good practices and experiences have been promoted across the country in advancing the building of a Beautiful China? What measures will be taken in this regard? Thank you. 

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. "Beautiful China" was a buzz phrase in news reports about the 20th CPC National Congress. The phrase was first mentioned in the report to the 18th CPC National Congress, articulated as "working hard to build a beautiful country." The 19th CPC National Congress included the vision in a two-step strategic plan for building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects by the middle of this century. The 20th CPC National Congress further laid out that we will make notable progress in building a Beautiful China in the next five years, and largely accomplish the goal by 2035.

General Secretary Xi Jinping has attached great importance to the issue and stressed the need to build a Beautiful China with blue skies, green lands and clear waters on multiple occasions. He always discusses local practices for building a Beautiful China during his inspection tours. This includes related initiatives made by Hainan, Qinghai, Hebei, Hunan and Jiangsu provinces and Ningxia Hui autonomous region. At the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection, General Secretary Xi launched an initiative to comprehensively promote the building of a Beautiful China and accelerate the modernization of harmonious coexistence between humanity and nature.

Following the arrangements of the CPC Central Committee, the MEE has resolutely taken on the political task of ecological and environmental protection and worked to continuously promote the building of a Beautiful China.

In terms of policy research and arrangement, the MEE has strengthened strategic planning and top-level design. We have continued to study the indicator system for building a Beautiful China. To achieve the goal of completing the building of a Beautiful China by 2035, the MEE has developed a set of phased strategic arrangements. This plan incorporates strategies to overcome difficulties during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025), continuously consolidate achievements during the 15th Five-Year Plan period (2026-2030), and strive for comprehensive improvements during the 16th Five-Year Plan period (2031-2035).

In terms of promoting exemplary cases, the MEE highlights the importance of a beautiful natural environment. It adopts an approach that integrates a systemic eco-environmental solution, satisfying the people's needs for a beautiful eco-environment, and promoting the realization of the value of eco-products. The MEE works to protect beautiful rivers and lakes with clear waters, green shores and abundant bio-diversity resources, as well as beautiful bays featuring a clean environment, rich bio-diversity resources, and harmonious coexistence between humanity and nature, and promotes successful experiences, practices, and exemplary cases in this regard. Since last year, the MEE has identified and showcased 18 such rivers and lakes, as well as eight bays, as exemplary cases. For example, the Maozhou River in Shenzhen has turned from a heavily polluted river into one with clear waters, a white beach, and abundant bio-diversity resources. The ecological corridor along the river is now filled with tourists. In this sense, such transformations have recreated a beautiful natural environment and garnered public support.

Regarding local practices, the MEE has issued guidelines on promoting the building of a Beautiful China. Provinces like Zhejiang, Fujian, Shandong, Guangdong, Jiangsu, Sichuan and Hebei have all made efforts to explore models to achieve this goal. For example, Fujian proposed a five-layered system that focuses on creating beautiful urban environments, rural areas, rivers and lakes, bays and countryside. Sichuan emphasized both the spatial and cultural aspects of this initiative. Cities like Hangzhou, Shenzhen and Qingdao have all set more ambitious requirements and targets for creating beautiful urban environments.

The next five years will be crucial for building a Beautiful China. The MEE will strive to ensure clear skies and restore the beautiful environment of lakes, rivers, bays, and mountains. It will expedite efforts to establish pioneering areas for the initiative and create beautiful provinces, cities, and countryside. The MEE will act according to local conditions and gradually implement the initiative across the country to jointly build a Beautiful China with shared benefits, and embark on a new journey in this endeavor. Thank you.



Mr. Huang mentioned that since the 18th CPC National Congress, China's role in global environmental governance has shifted from participation to leadership. Can you provide us with more information on this topic? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your question. I'm glad to give you additional information about China's transformation from participation to leadership in global environmental governance.

The Earth is the only home where we humans can survive. General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out, "We only have one Earth. Protecting the ecological environment and pushing sustainable development are our joint obligations." Since the 18th CPC National Congress, China has paid close attention to the trend of the times with a global perspective. It has fulfilled its responsibilities as a major country and achieved the transformation from participation to leadership in global environmental governance. From my perspective, China has made the following achievements.

First, China has been deeply engaged in global climate change governance. President Xi Jinping has constantly expounded China's proposition on global climate change governance on major international occasions. This has injected strong momentum into global efforts to tackle climate change. China upholds multilateralism and the principle of equal, common, but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. It has been working to ensure the formulation, signing, enforcement, and implementation of the Paris Agreement and has become a crucial force in guiding global climate actions. China also announced the target of reaching peak carbon emissions by 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality by 2060. It also pledged to stop building new coal-fired power projects overseas and initiated and steadily developed the world's largest carbon market. These efforts have showcased China's dedication as a responsible major country.

Second, China has taken the lead in global biodiversity governance. As the host country, China successfully held the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP15). It also facilitated the adoption of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework. This historic document is not only ambitious but also practical and balanced. The move has opened a new chapter in global biodiversity governance, widely recognized by the international community. As one of the first countries to sign and ratify the Convention on Biological Diversity, China has achieved great progress in biodiversity conservation, quite better than the global average. About 18% of China's total land territory is designated as nature reserves, and over 30% is marked as ecological protection "red line" zones. The country has seen a steady increase in wild populations of more than 300 rare and endangered wild animals and plants. China also took the lead and allocated 1.5 billion yuan to establish the Kunming Biodiversity Fund in a bid to support developing countries in their efforts to protect biodiversity.

Third, we have promoted global green and low-carbon development. In recent years, China has vigorously promoted the advancement of renewable energy. The total installed capacity of renewable energy power generation has exceeded 1.3 billion kilowatts, surpassing coal power. The installed capacities of hydropower, wind power, solar power, and nuclear power under construction rank as the largest in the world. The production and sales of new energy vehicles have topped global rankings for eight consecutive years, with a fleet of 16.2 million vehicles. Over half of the world's new energy vehicles are driven in China. China supplies 50% of the world's wind power equipment and 80% of photovoltaic component equipment. It is precisely due to the technological advancements and widespread application of renewable energies such as wind and photovoltaic power in China that the utilization cost of renewable energy has significantly decreased worldwide. In 2021, the cost of solar photovoltaic installation was approximately 82% lower compared to 2010, and the cost of wind power installation had decreased by 35% to 40%. This has not only propelled China's green and low-carbon development but also contributed significantly to global emissions reduction.

Fourth, we have been jointly building the Green Belt and Road. We have signed cooperation agreements with over 30 countries and international organizations along the Belt and Road and launched the Belt and Road Green Development Partnership Initiative with 31 countries. We spearheaded the establishment of the Belt and Road International Green Development Alliance, which now boasts more than 150 cooperation partners from 43 countries. We've developed the Belt and Road Ecological and Environmental Big Data Service Platform, implemented the Green Silk Road Envoy Program, and trained over 3,000 environmental management personnel, experts, and scholars from over 120 countries. We have engaged in South-South cooperation on climate change response along the Belt and Road and inked cooperation agreements with 39 partner countries. We have assisted them in enhancing their capabilities to address climate change through the provision of meteorological satellites and photovoltaic power systems.

Fifth, we have strengthened environmental management for overseas projects. We have published guidelines for ecological and environmental protection in foreign investment and cooperation initiatives, thereby setting explicit environmental protection requirements for project execution. Chinese enterprises have embraced advanced environmental protection philosophies in the process of undertaking overseas projects. For instance, during the construction of the container terminal project in Ghana, a Tortoise Breeding Center was established, resulting in the hatching and release of more than 10,000 baby sea turtles. In the course of the China-Laos railway construction, tunnels were extended, and roads were replaced with bridges several times to safeguard the habitat of the local elephant population.

Next, we will continue to uphold the concept of a community with a shared future for mankind, and actualize the Global Development Initiative, Global Security Initiative, and the Global Civilization Initiative. We will actively engage in global environmental governance, diligently fulfill international conventions, and make larger contributions to fostering sustainable development for humanity and constructing a clean and beautiful world. Thank you.

Cover News:

Hello Mr. Huang, we have noticed that PM2.5 concentration increased by 6.2% in the first half of this year. What is the reason for this increase? What measures will be taken in the next step to further protect the blue sky? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. The issue of air quality frequently features in our press conferences, and I appreciate you bringing it up today. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, China has waged war on air pollution with unprecedented efforts, and we have achieved historic improvements in air quality. From 2013 to 2022, despite our GDP doubling, China's average PM2.5 concentration has decreased by 57%, and the number of heavy pollution days has reduced by 93%. This improvement has made China the country with the most rapid enhancement in air quality globally. In 2013, Beijing's average PM2.5 concentration was 89.5 micrograms per cubic meter, but it dropped to 30 micrograms per cubic meter last year. Moreover, the number of heavy pollution days decreased from 58 to just three, a feat recognized by the United Nations Environment Programme as the "Beijing miracle."

As you mentioned earlier, national air quality deteriorated in the first half of this year, with a 6.2% increase in PM2.5 concentration and a 3.2 percentage point decrease in the proportion of good air quality days compared to the same period last year. Through our analysis, we believe there are three main reasons for this deterioration:

First, the base for the same period last year was low. Over the past three years, due to factors such as COVID-19, China's atmospheric pollutant emissions have significantly decreased. In the first half of last year, the national PM2.5 concentration was 32 micrograms per cubic meter, the lowest in the same period in nearly eight years. Second, this year's meteorological conditions have been extremely unfavorable. Influenced by the periodic activity of the Asian winter monsoon, sand and dust weather processes have increased significantly throughout the country. There were 37 occurrences in the first half of the year, including 15 large-scale sand and dust weather events, the most in the same period in 15 years. These weather conditions have resulted in a 5.4 percentage point decrease in the proportion of good air quality days nationwide and a 1.4 percentage point increase in heavy pollution days. At the same time, it is predicted that China will experience a moderate to strong El Ni?o event, and extreme heat may become the new normal for several years to come. In June of this year, there were 5.2 more high-temperature days in northern China than usual, resulting in an exceptionally high number of days exceeding ozone standards. Third, emissions have increased. As economic activities gradually recover following COVID-19, the production of some high-energy-consuming and high-emission industries, such as metallurgy, building materials, and petrochemicals, has seen a year-on-year increase, leading to increased pollutant emissions. For instance, in the first half of this year, the output of 10 non-ferrous metals in the country increased by 8% year on year. However, I want to emphasize that even considering these factors, China's PM2.5 concentration has still decreased by 15% and the proportion of good air quality days has increased by 1.3 percentage points compared with the same period in 2019, before COVID-19. Air quality has clearly improved overall.

Next, we will thoroughly implement the guiding principles from the 20th CPC National Congress and the National Ecological and Environmental Protection Conference, adhere to precise, scientific, and law-based pollution control, and expedite the introduction of the "Action Plan for Continuous Improvement of Air Quality." Our efforts will be concentrated on the following three aspects:

First, we will stringently control the increase in emissions. We will adhere to the coordinated reduction of pollution and carbon emissions to boost efficiency, expedite the development of green and low-carbon industries, and decisively curb the blind development of "two high and one low" (high energy consumption, high emissions, and low efficiency) projects. We will hasten the low-carbon transformation of energy, vigorously develop new and clean energy sources, and advance the development of a green transportation system. For bulk commodities such as coal and ore, we will prioritize the use of railways and waterways for long-distance transportation.

Second, we will reduce existing emissions. We will accelerate the clean heating transition in northern regions, encourage ultra-low emissions transformation in key industries, comprehensively manage volatile organic compounds, and undertake major projects such as the shift from road to rail and from road to waterway. These initiatives aim to achieve significant emission reductions and offset the uncertainties triggered by extreme meteorological conditions.

Third, we will continue to intensify our efforts in supervision and support. Since the beginning of this year, we have dispatched more than 2,400 law enforcement personnel from ecological and environmental departments nationwide to key areas and cities struggling with air quality issues. We've organized them into two teams, "the expert group" and "the general group," and established online and offline platforms to oversee and assist efforts to improve air quality. Concentrating on large emitters and specialized tasks in key areas, we have conducted in-depth investigations and research, identifying a total of 32,000 gas-emitting problems. As a result, 26,000 issues have been rectified, effectively reducing pollutant emissions and enhancing environmental governance capabilities. Moving forward, we will continue to supervise and provide support in key areas, promoting the implementation of crucial tasks.

Media friends, the blue sky protection campaign cannot be accomplished in a single action, nor can it be realized solely through the efforts of ecological and environmental departments. It requires the cooperation of the entire society, and the combination of law-based governance, market forces, science and technology, and policies, particularly with heightened support from finance, taxes, and pricing. We will continue to make relentless efforts to control air pollution and protect the beautiful blue sky for the people. Thank you.


The National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection convened recently and proposed to further leverage the sword-wielding role of central government environmental inspection. How were the problems found during the first two rounds of inspections rectified? When is the third round expected to take place, and how will it be different from the previous two rounds? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. As we all know, central government environmental inspection is a major institutional innovation and reform measure personally planned, deployed and promoted by General Secretary Xi Jinping. Since the commencement of the pilot project in Hebei province in 2015, two rounds of inspections had been completed by June 2022, covering 31 provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps. We have also re-inspected 20 provinces and autonomous regions and inspected two departments under the State Council and six centrally-administered enterprises.

During the inspections, we adhered to a strict tone and problem-oriented approach, directly tackling the most challenging issues. We resolved a significant number of prominent eco-environmental issues and achieved remarkable results, earning "recognition from the central government, praise from the people, support from all social sectors, and the resolution of many problems." Of all the 3,294 tasks specified in the plan for the first round of supervision and rectification, over 97% have been completed by June 2023. Over 64% of the 2,164 tasks specified in the plan for the second round of supervision and rectification have been completed. The two rounds of inspections have handled 287,000 public complaints of problems related to environmental matters, with 286,000 of these complaints either fully resolved or having achieved progress toward resolution. We have made notable progress in the rectification of prominent problems. For example, the Qilian Mountains in Gansu province have curtailed illegal acts such as unauthorized mining and construction and are gradually regaining their pristine waters and lush mountains, transitioning from chaos to governance. The Helan Mountains in Ningxia Hui autonomous region have effectively curbed disorderly mining activities, with the scars left over by history gradually being healed. In Yunnan province, all illegal buildings in the Grade-I and II protection areas of Dianchi Lake in Changyao Mountain have been entirely demolished, restoring green to the earth.

Over the past few years, I have further understood the inspection work, which can be specified in the following aspects.

First, General Secretary Xi Jinping has attached great importance to our inspection work. Thanks to the high attention and kind care of General Secretary Xi Jinping, we have achieved what we have today. Regarding this aspect, General Secretary Xi Jinping has given more than 90 important instructions, making clear requirements for us to fearlessly conduct investigations, expose cases, make rectifications, and enforce the accountability system. The final decisions and encouragements made by General Secretary Xi Jinping, especially in critical moments, have always been the source of our confidence and the driving force to further promote inspection work. In his speech at the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection, General Secretary Xi Jinping repeatedly required us to further leverage the sword-wielding role of central government environmental inspection.

Second, we have addressed issues in a targeted manner. We have adhered to a target-oriented and scientific approach, upheld the rule of law in supervision, and focused on the concerns of the central government, society, and the people. Over the past few years, we have concentrated on prominent problems emerging during the implementation of major regional strategies such as joint efforts in conservation and no large-scale development in the Yangtze River Economic Belt, the 10-year fishing ban in the Yangtze River, and setting up urban development, land use, human activities and industrial development based on the local water system and conditions in the Yellow River Basin. We have rigorously controlled the initiation of projects featuring high energy consumption, high pollution, and low quality. We have also paid attention to the implementation progress of projects, aiming to reduce excess capacity and address major problems, including significant ecological damage and environmental pollution. We've seized on the main contradictions and the main aspects of those contradictions, striving to accurately profile individuals or entities under supervision and gain a clear understanding of their situation. We will thoroughly research and investigate issues across the country and make a strong start in the second half of the rectification campaign.

Third, we have implemented an accountability mechanism. Major problems and typical cases identified by inspectors were handed over to local authorities in accordance with relevant regulations, discipline and law. After two rounds of inspections, we transferred 667 accountability-related cases and held 9,699 people accountable for their misconduct, including 1,335 departmental/bureau-level cadres and 4,195 cadres of section rank. This has effectively demonstrated the deterrent role of inspectors.

Fourth, we have focused on building our talent team. We have enhanced practical exercises and professional training for our personnel, helping them achieve political strength, great skills, impeccable conduct, and a strong sense of responsibility. Moreover, we aim to equip them with the capabilities to fully utilize new technologies and improve their ability to identify problems accurately and efficiently. For example, during the filming of the warning videos for the Yangtze River and the Yellow River, our personnel collaborated with CCTV staff, investigating and filming on-site for over seven months each year, covering more than 600,000 kilometers. They made full use of new technologies such as satellite remote sensing, UAV aerial photography, and infrared rays, ensuring our work's orderly and efficient development.

This year marks the first year of the third round of inspections. We will uphold the implementation of Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization as a major political task, step up efforts to promote the key tasks of promoting green, low-carbon, and high-quality development, and win the critical battle against pollution prevention and control. Additionally, we will map out the new round of inspections. We will wield the sharp sword of inspection, taking action against anyone who breaks the law. Furthermore, we will urge the inspected entities to effectively shoulder the major political responsibility for constructing a Beautiful China and contribute to accelerating the modernization of harmony between humanity and nature. Thank you!

CNR News:

We have observed that the MEE attaches great importance to the work of keeping waters clear, and has made great efforts in this regard. Recently, it launched a pilot project for water ecological assessment in the Yangtze River basin. How will the MEE coordinate the governance of water resources, water environment and water ecology in the future? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your question. You raised a question that we are thinking deeply about, which is how to further consolidate and enhance the effectiveness of keeping our waters clean. Human beings have always preferred to live close to water bodies, and civilizations have flourished near water bodies. Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the Party Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core has emphasized the protection of the water ecological environment as a priority in promoting ecological progress. This has spurred transitional changes in China's water ecological environment protection. Through a series of major initiatives such as the investigation and rectification of sewage outfalls into seas and rivers, the remediation of black and malodorous water bodies in cities, and the eradication of inferior Class V surface water, our clean water defense campaign has achieved noteworthy results. I will not list them one by one, but just talk about the results. By last year, the proportion of Class I-III surface water sections nationwide had reached 87.9%, approaching the level of developed countries. The main channel of the Yangtze River has maintained Class II water quality for three consecutive years, and the main channel of the Yellow River has attained Class II water quality for the first time. Black and malodorous water bodies in built-up areas of cities at the prefecture level and above have been basically eliminated, and the level of drinking water safety has been improved.

Next, we will thoroughly implement the spirit of the 20th CPC National Congress and the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection, and continue to win the battle of keeping waters clear. We will adhere to a three-pronged coordination of water resource protection, water environment management, and water ecological restoration. Our overall strategy is to concentrate on the protection and restoration of water ecology while consolidating and enhancing the quality of the water environment. In this respect, we will focus on three aspects of our work.

First, we will focus on consolidating and improving the quality of the water environment. We will direct our efforts towards addressing sewage outfalls into rivers, effectively resolving prominent problems such as illegal overflow and direct discharge of sewage along rivers, and efficiently controlling the discharge of pollutants into rivers. Last year, the General Office of the State Council issued guidelines on strengthening the supervision and management of sewage outfalls into rivers and seas. These guidelines call for a comprehensive approach to investigation, measurement, traceability, treatment, and management in this area, aiming to ensure comprehensive rectification of various pollution sources in urban and rural areas. Over the next few years, the investigation and rectification of sewage outfalls will continue to be a key feature of our work. We will endeavor to complete the rectification of sewage outfalls of the entire Yangtze River basin as well as those of the main channels and important tributaries of the Yellow River and other basins by the end of 2025. Second, we will further promote water pollution control in industrial parks within the Yangtze River Economic Belt and initiate a special campaign for water pollution control in industrial parks along the Yellow River.

Second, we will focus on water ecological protection and restoration. Biodiversity is an essential indicator for assessing the water ecological restoration of the Yangtze River. We will focus on the Yangtze River basin to promote the pilot project of water ecological assessment. This past June, we jointly issued the detailed rules for evaluating indicators of water ecology in the Yangtze River basin (trial version) in collaboration with relevant departments. The rules clearly stipulate that from 2022 to 2024, a pilot assessment will be carried out in 17 provinces within the Yangtze River basin to determine the assessment base and conduct the first evaluation in 2025. We will conduct water ecological assessments to guide local governments to fulfill their responsibilities for water ecological protection and restoration, and strive to improve the diversity, stability, and sustainability of the water ecosystem in the Yangtze River basin.

Third, we will focus on promoting the implementation of water ecological environment protection plans for key river basins. First, we will formulate a list of crucial tasks and measures for implementing the plans, strengthen unified supervision across river basins, improve the working mechanism for identifying and addressing major issues, and solidify the primary responsibilities of local governments. Second, we will vigorously advance the protection and construction of beautiful rivers and lakes. Following the Reference Index for the Protection and Construction of Beautiful Rivers and Lakes (Trial) that has been issued, we aim to transform over 2,700 water bodies into picturesque rivers and lakes with clear water and verdant banks by 2035. Third, we will strive to make solid progress in the fight against black and malodorous water bodies. We will consolidate and improve the effectiveness of the treatment of black and malodorous water bodies in cities at the prefecture level and above, and strengthen supervision of the 2,863 remediated black and malodorous water bodies to ensure long-term cleanliness. We will intensify the rectification of black and malodorous water bodies in county-level cities and aim to complete the rectification by 2025. Thank you.


Nuclear safety is the lifeline of nuclear power development. What measures has the MEE taken to ensure nuclear and radiation safety? What are the next steps? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. Nuclear safety regulation is an important function of the MEE. Nuclear safety is the lifeline of the nuclear industry and constitutes a significant part of national security. China is a major player in the utilization of nuclear energy and nuclear technology. There are 77 nuclear power units in operation and under construction in the Chinese mainland, placing us second in the world. Over the years, China's nuclear and radiation safety measures have been well implemented, and there have been no incidents or accidents rated at or above Level 2 under the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale (INES). Last year, the World Association of Nuclear Operators conducted a comprehensive index ranking of 387 operating units worldwide, and there were 74 units scoring full marks, of which 37 units were located in the Chinese mainland. At this year's Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Nuclear Safety, all parties agreed that China has achieved and maintained a high level of nuclear safety with impressive performance.

China's good nuclear safety performance is the result of the considerable attention of the Party Central Committee. Nuclear safety has been integrated into the national security system, elevated to a national security strategy, and the development of the nuclear industry has always been based on safety. At the Nuclear Security Summit, President Xi Jinping proposed a rational, coordinated, and balanced nuclear safety strategy, placing equal emphasis on development and safety. At this year's National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection, General Secretary Xi Jinping once again set forth clear requirements for implementing a holistic approach to national security and taking robust measures to ensure nuclear and radiation safety. Thanks to years of efforts, we have developed a distinctly Chinese approach to nuclear safety.

First, an effective system of policies and regulations has been established. We have promulgated the Nuclear Safety Law, and published the white paper entitled "Nuclear Safety in China." We've formulated and implemented medium- and long-term plans for nuclear safety every five years to coordinate work. We have formed a set of regulations and standards that conform to both international standards and China's domestic conditions. These include two laws, seven administrative regulations, 26 departmental rules, 100 safety guidelines and over 1,000 technical standards, holding high and strict standards.

Second, strict and effective nuclear safety supervision has been carried out. We adhere to the principles of independence, transparency, the rule of law, rationality and effectiveness. We have established a three-in-one nuclear safety supervision system consisting of administrative organs, dispatched agencies, and technical support units. We have strictly reviewed and released licenses throughout the entire nuclear industry chain, awarding the world's first reactor licenses for models such as the AP1000 and Hualong One. We have ensured thorough supervision over the site selection, construction, operation, and decommissioning of nuclear facilities, implementing 24-hour on-site supervision for key nuclear facilities. We have adhered to a problem-oriented approach, promoted risk-oriented supervision, and maintained zero tolerance for illegal operations and dishonesty. At the end of last year, we completed a three-year campaign to address nuclear and radiation safety hazards, conducting 6,141 inspections, keeping detailed accounts of identified problems and urging item-by-item rectifications.

Third, we have stepped up our capability to provide basic safeguards for nuclear security. We have set up a national radiation and environment quality monitoring network, a supervisory monitoring system for key nuclear facilities, and an emergency monitoring network with 1,835 monitoring spots to promptly obtain and publish radioactive environmental data. The emergency response system for nuclear and radioactive accidents has been upgraded, with three quick response teams formed to handle nuclear accidents promptly and effectively. We have constructed a national nuclear safety regulatory technology research and development base and conducted key research initiatives. Moreover, The Longhe disposal site has been built to deal with low-level radioactive waste in China's nuclear power plants.

Next, we will strictly fulfill our responsibility for nuclear safety, comprehensively improve nuclear safety supervision, and strengthen scientific and technological innovation in nuclear safety, to ensure that nuclear safety is foolproof. 

Thank you.

Red Star News:

Hello Mr. Huang! My questions are: Control of new pollutants is an indispensable part of the battle against pollution. Why are they called "new pollutants?" Why is it difficult to control them? How do you plan to tackle this issue in the future? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. You have raised a highly contemporary issue in the environmental field. The control of new pollutants is an important deployment made by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council. It is essential to public health and reflects the new requirements for expanding the depth and breadth of pollution prevention and control efforts.

The term "new pollutants" is a concept relative to the traditional pollutants we are familiar with, such as sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and PM2.5. New pollutants generally refer to environmentally persistent, bio-accumulative, and bio-toxic chemicals. The environmental and health risks of such substances are not easily detectable. Even if they enter the environment at a low dose, they may pose risks and hidden dangers to our physical health, environmental health, and environmental safety. 

In May last year, the General Office of the State Council issued the action plan for new pollutants control. The MEE, together with other relevant departments, has been actively promoting the implementation of new pollutants control and has achieved substantial results.

First, we've taken stock of the whole picture. We selected more than 4,000 types of chemical substances that are highly hazardous and commonly detected in the environment. We investigated their production and usage, and gradually gained an understanding of their distribution. Second, we've assessed environmental risks. Chemicals banned or restricted internationally but not in China have been included in our assessment plans as a priority, and will go through full lifecycle environmental risk assessments. Third, we strictly maintain a bottom line principle regarding risks. Working with relevant departments, we released the list of key new pollutants under control (2023 version), which outlines control measures, such as prohibitions, restrictions, and emission limitations, for 14 new pollutants that pose prominent environmental risks. For example, short-chain chlorinated paraffin - used to produce school bags, plastic running tracks, and children's toys - is set to be phased out by the end of this year. This year, we will also eliminate two categories of perfluoro chemicals that have drawn international attention and restrict the use of perfluorooctanoic acids, banning their use in waterproof and oil-proof clothing, baking paper, gastroscopy tubes, and so forth. Fourth, we have stepped up supervision and law enforcement. In conjunction with market authorities, we conducted enforcement inspections and investigated and dealt with 15 cases of illegal production of persistent organic pollutants used in building insulation last year. Fifth, we've elevated our guidance and support. Currently, 31 provinces and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps have issued provincial-level work plans for managing new pollutants.

At the same time, we realize that new pollutants, with a wide range of sources, involve numerous industries and long industrial chains, so it is difficult to develop technologies for their treatment, and interdepartmental and intersectoral collaboration are required for the control of such substances. Also, the control of new pollutants in China is still in its early phase, facing shortcomings such as a thin foundation, insufficient resource allocation, and serious capacity insufficiency.

Next, the MEE will work with relevant departments to fully implement General Secretary Xi Jinping's important instructions and the guiding principles from the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection. On the one hand, we will enhance technological support, prioritize the treatment of new pollutants in our national basic research and sci-tech innovation agenda, and secure breakthroughs in core technologies in this field. On the other hand, we will effectively prevent the environmental and health risks of new pollutants. Exercising full life-cycle management of environmental risks, we will further modernize the system and capacity for new pollutants treatment. We will make every effort to maintain a safe eco-environment and protect public health. Thank you.


Xing Huina:

The last two questions, please.

Hong Kong Bauhinia Magazine:

Good morning, Mr. Huang. Tightening the supervision of ecological conservation is an important measure for ensuring national ecological security. So far, what has been done to strengthen the supervision of ecological conservation? Moreover, what measures will be taken in the future to improve the diversity, stability and sustainability of the ecosystem? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. The natural ecosystem is like a living organism. At the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection, General Secretary Xi Jinping stressed that efforts should be made to improve the diversity, stability, and sustainability of the ecosystem, to protect it in an intensified manner, and effectively strengthen the supervision of ecological conservation and restoration, so as to leave a beautiful ecological environment for future generations.

In recent years, the MEE has carried out its duties of guiding, coordinating, and supervising ecological conservation and restoration efforts. We have strengthened external supervision with unified policy planning and standards-setting, unified monitoring and evaluation, unified supervision and law enforcement, and unified inspection and accountability. The highlights of our work are found in the following three areas:

First, we have made extensive efforts to build an ecological conservation supervision system. A series of documents were issued, including the Opinions on Strengthening the Supervision of Ecological Conservation, the Plan for Ecological Conservation Supervision During the 14th Five-year Plan Period, the Provisional Measures for Ecological Environment Supervision of Nature Reserves, and the Measures for Ecological Environment Supervision of Ecological Conservation Red Lines (for Trial Implementation). A basic ecological conservation supervision system has been established. The system conducts monitoring and evaluation at five levels, including the whole nation, key regions, and ecological conservation red lines. The system ensures the enforcement of central government environmental inspections and adherence to the Guiding Catalogue for Integrated Administrative Law Enforcement in Ecological and Environmental Protection. It also supervises ecological conservation red lines and nature reserves. It also includes the "Green Shield" campaign, aiming to strengthen supervision of nature reserves. Furthermore, we are developing an oversight platform for ecological conservation red lines and building demonstration areas for ecological conservation.

Second, we have made great efforts to improve our capability to detect problems. By fully utilizing satellites, manned and unmanned planes, and both fixed and mobile monitoring systems on the ground, we have established a space-ground integrated network to monitor eco-quality. We have also conducted eco-quality supervision and monitoring, focusing on nature reserves, ecological conservation red lines, and key ecosystem service zones to improve our capability to preemptively identify problems. Up to now, we have identified more than 5,000 key problems in national nature reserves and 79 cases of ecological damage in five provinces piloting the supervision of ecological conservation red lines.

Third, we have made significant efforts to urge the rectification of these problems. On the one hand, through two rounds of central government environmental inspections, we released 87 representative cases of ecological damage that hinder sustainable development. We made a documentary series that revealed 226 instances of ecological damage along the Yangtze Economic Belt and in the Yellow River basin. All these efforts have pushed for the resolution of many acute ecological problems. For example, the illegally constructed villas at the northern foot of the Qinling Mountains were demolished, and public parks are now built on the site. Moreover, in the Karamaile Mountain Nature Reserve in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, Przewalski's horse - a species once extinct in this area - has been reintroduced into its native habitat. On the other hand, the "Green Shield" campaign helped to solve 94.24% of the key problems found in national nature reserves. The number of critical issues, as well as areas intensely impacted by human activities, have decreased within nature reserves. The encouraging progress achieved in recent years essentially represents a reversal of previous encroachments and environmental damage within nature reserves.

Next, we will act upon the arrangements and requirements set forth by the National Conference on Eco-environmental Protection. We will strengthen unified regulation over owners, developers, and even regulators, working collaboratively to protect and restore ecosystems, thereby acting as guardians of the ecological environment. First, we aim to enhance the mechanism for coordinating ecological conservation oversight. This will involve bolstering communication and cooperation among departments and improving information-sharing and case-transferring mechanisms. Second, we will rigorously fulfill the responsibilities of ecological conservation. To accomplish this, we will further refine the regulatory system for protecting and restoring ecosystems and continue to give play to the role of central inspection on eco-environmental protection. Third, we will take stern measures to address activities that damage the environment, ensuring we root out pointless formalities in protecting and restoring ecosystems. Thank you!

Nanfang Metropolis Daily:

In recent years, the MEE has strengthened law enforcement efforts. Notably, since 2020, the MEE, together with the Supreme People's Procuratorate and the Ministry of Public Security, has launched a special campaign over four consecutive years to crack down on illegal and criminal activities that pose a threat to the environment, particularly those related to hazardous waste and the falsification of automatic monitoring data by key pollutant-discharging units. How effective has this special campaign been? Furthermore, what are the priority tasks moving forward? Thank you.

Huang Runqiu:

Thank you for your questions. The last questions indeed carry significant weight. Protecting the eco-environment with the strictest regulations and laws is the crucial principle of Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization. General Secretary Xi Jinping has emphasized that we must bolster systematic and holistic oversight, showing no leniency towards actions that damage our eco-environment. He insists that severe punishments should be levied for eco-environmental violations.

The MEE has thoroughly studied and put into practice Xi Jinping Thought on Ecological Civilization. To address the problems of the illegal transfer, dumping, utilization, and disposal of hazardous waste, as well as the frequent violations such as the forgery of automatic monitoring data by key pollutant-discharging units, we have collaborated with the Supreme People's Procuratorate and the Ministry of Public Security to launch a special campaign to crack down on these types of unlawful activities. Over the past four years, ecological and environmental authorities nationwide have investigated and addressed a total of 19,982 legal violations related to hazardous waste and automatic monitoring data, transferring 3,667 cases of suspected criminal activity to public security agencies.

Over the years, my colleagues and I have led teams to many provinces in China. We have conducted spot checks following the principles of no prior notice, not accepting reports, no escorts or receptions, and immediate field inspections at the primary level. We traveled directly to businesses to monitor pollution control, uncovering serious issues with fraudulent monitoring data at some enterprises. For instance, some enterprises tampered with or covered the sampling probe, used running water or clear water as samples, manipulated equipment computing parameters, installed hacking programs to alter data remotely, or even falsified data records. These activities of data forgery were usually conducted deliberately by pollutant-discharging enterprises that colluded with third-party service agencies. The means of forgery they adopted were diverse and highly professional, posing great challenges to investigations. These practices were very serious and had harmful consequences. They crossed the bottom line and violated criminal law. As such, they must be investigated and prosecuted severely and cracked down on resolutely without leniency.

After carrying out this special campaign for four consecutive years, we have made achievements in the following three aspects. 

First, we have maintained a tough stance and handled a number of prominent cases in accordance with the law. We have publicized 10 batches of 80 typical cases of violations concerning hazardous waste and fraudulent automatic monitoring data. For instance, in 2022, the ecology and environment authorities in Taizhou, Zhejiang province, resolved a case of environmental pollution. In this case, 49 people were implicated in the cross-provincial disposal of aluminum ash through online platforms. Six prefecture-level cities in Jiangsu, Shandong, and Zhejiang provinces were involved, with 8,226 tons of aluminum ash disposed of. Eighteen people received prison sentences, ranging from a minimum term of seven months to a maximum term of five years, forming an effective deterrent to environmental violations.

Second, we have taken joint actions with multiple departments and continued to intensify coordination between administrative law enforcement and criminal justice. We have gradually developed joint-action mechanisms such as joint meeting mechanisms, two-way consultation and reporting, and expert assistance in handling cases. We have pursued multi-dimensional cooperation in case investigation, forensic assessment, evidence preservation, and compulsory execution. To deal with difficult and complex major cases committed by organizations, we have assembled competent personnel to establish a joint special investigation team, thus creating synergy in addressing challenging cases. In January of this year, we collaborated with the Supreme People's Procuratorate and the Ministry of Public Security. We jointly supervised the handling of three major cases where third-party service agencies were involved in falsifying environmental impact assessment reports, acceptance monitoring, and motor vehicle inspections. We have investigated and prosecuted a batch of cases involving the forgery of environmental impact assessments, exemplified by the case of Shandong Jinhua Environmental Technology Company. This was the first criminal case involving an environmental impact assessment that was investigated, prosecuted, and sentenced, further intensifying the deterrent effect.

Third, we have seen that local governments assume responsibility for rectification and promote the standardized management of the industry. To address the salient problems identified during examinations of law enforcement, relevant provincial governments have given them great attention, established leading groups for rectification, and held supervisory meetings to arrange and advance rectification efforts, leading to a thorough resolution of significant issues. At the same time, we have gleaned lessons from past experiences and organized multiple departments to launch joint inspections, preventing the recurrence of similar problems. During the special campaign, local governments have traced the origins of and broadened their investigations into suspected illegal and criminal activities. This has effectively severed illegal interest chains, applied pressure on the industry to standardize whole-chain management, and gradually strengthened the industry's consensus on self-discipline.

Next, the MEE will continue to strengthen supervision and law enforcement and promote inter-departmental coordination. The MEE will maintain our firm stance, focusing on key regions and industries and rigorously clamping down on illegal activities that violate environmental protection laws. With the utmost determination and the most effective measures, we will advance the rectification of issues. We will ensure the goals and tasks of environmental protection are implemented and deliver results.

Thank you!

Xing Huina:

Today's briefing is hereby concluded. Thanks to Mr. Huang and our friends from the media. See you!

Translated and edited by Xu Xiaoxuan, Li Xiao, Liu Jianing, Zhang Junmian, Zhu Bochen, Wang Wei, Liu Caiyi, Ma Yujia, Qin Qi, Yang Xi, Yan Bin, Yuan Fang, Liu Sitong, Liu Qiang, Xu Kailin, Huang Shan, Li Huiru, David Ball, Jay Birbeck, and Tom Arnsten. In case of any discrepancy between the English and Chinese texts, the Chinese version is deemed to prevail.

/3    Xing Huina

/3    Huang Runqiu

/3    Group photo