Our oceans cover approximately 75% of the planet Earth. A distinct percent of our food
resources come from these waters including fish and plants. The air around us is what keeps the
flame of life from fading and flickering out. Why would anyone pollute these precious parts of
our ecosystem? Well they are, and pollution laws should be strengthened and vigorously
China, a country with an extensive coast line, should work harder to protect its marine
environment. According to the theme of the international Year of the Ocean, 1998, oceans are
the common inheritance of all people, it is therefore our responsibility to protect the oceans for
future generations. So then why is there a "large-scale discharge of waste containing nutrients
with nitrogen and phosphorus contributing to the killing of 300 tons of fish" (China
environment Daily). The paper said that a total of 2.9 billion tons of sewage were discharged
into the waters at South China's Pearl River mouth in 1997, with a rate treatment of less than
10%. This large amount of discharge of harmful land-sourced substances into the seas has
posed a major threat to the marine environment. The current law, which merely restricts the
concentration of pollutants, is not effective enough to guarantee a high quality of seawater.
This is an effect of the legislation lacking articles concerning the quantity of the discharged
wastes. The disastrous "red tide" which hit the coastal waters of China's Guangdong Province
and Hong Kong between March and April of 1998, is a direct result of this lackingness.
In August of 1982, China adopted the Law on Marine Environment Protection, which
went into effect March of '83. Regulations such as: Regulations Concerning the Prevention
Damage to the Marine Environment by Coastal Construction Projects (1990), Regulations
Concerning the Prevention of Pollution Damage to the...