China Fixing Polluted Land and Upgrading Farmland

China will spend $440 billion over three years to improve village sanitation and clean up the heavily polluted rural environment.

They will build clean rural toilets, treat household waste, and construct village sewage treatment plants.

Large amounts of land and water have been contaminated as a result of negligible waste treatment infrastructure, the overuse of fertilizers and pesticides, and the construction of substandard backyard industrial plants.

China will make about 90% of its contaminated farmland fit for crops by the end of 2020. China has declared 3.33 million hectares – an area the size of Belgium – too polluted to grow crops, according to a 2013 survey. As many as 10 million hectares are contaminated by heavy metals, according to 2015 figures.

China has been building drought and flood-resistant farmland since 2011. iBy the end of 2018, China has already developed 640 million mu (42 million hectares) of upgraded farmland, with grain output increasing 100 kg per mu on average.

Water, fertilizer, and pesticide consumption on the farmland fell 24.3 percent, 13.8 percent and 19.1 percent, respectively, per mu. The construction of more high-output fields, coupled with higher agricultural mechanization levels and improved varieties of crops will increase agricultural yields. China aims to develop 800 million mu of high-standard farmland by 2020, and 1 billion by 2022. China has about 1.8 billion mu of farmland.

In 2017, China’s total arable land fell to 134.86 million hectares (2.0 billion mu), a decline of 60,900 hectares compared to the previous year.

China has 4 million hectares of greenhouses. They produce nearly 1 trillion yuan ($145 billion) worth of vegetables each year. Electrifying the air in greenhouses can boost vegetable output by 20 to 30 percent. Pesticide use has decreased 70 to 100 per cent. And fertilizer consumption has dropped more than 20 percent.

Chinese has for more than 90 percent of the plastic greenhouse used worldwide.

Old Greenhouses in China

New Modern guttered greenhouses

China developed a national database and analysis best farming practices that is customized based on local soil and other conditions.

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