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Hold individuals accountable, air quality improved

A milestone has been met as the Ministry of Environmental Protection has completed the first nationwide inspections over the past two years to fulfill the goal of building a “Beautiful China”, while holding the individuals accountable for environmental wrongdoings.

Environmental inspection authorities disclose that a total of 1,527 were detained with more than 18,000 were held accountable.

Through public tip-offs and random checks, inspectors looked into 135,000 cases and imposed fines totaling 1.43 billion yuan ($200 million).

This nationwide inspection started back in December, 2015, focusing on issues like air quality, water resources, natural reserves, as well as illegal mining and production activities.

“These inspections focus on the environmental problems that affect the public’s daily life, like littering and noise pollution,” Liu Changgen, deputy director of China Environmental Protection Inspection Office, said.

Liu added by solving these problems, the ministry hopes to help improve people’s sense of fulfillment, and the mass participation has made the inspection process more precise and effective.

Officials at the news conference also commented on the air quality in Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, saying coal burning and high-emission vehicles contribute the most to the smoggy weather.

They hailed the improved air quality in the past year, as a result of a nationwide campaign fighting pollution and environmental degradation.