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China to launch new round of environmental inspections

Editor: Mengjie

BEIJING, Aug. 7 (Xinhua) -- China will soon launch a new  round of central environmental inspections covering eight provincial-level  areas, as the country finishes nationwide investigations into local  environmental protection efforts, according to an official statement  Monday.

A total of eight inspection teams will start month-long  on-site investigations into local government work, including Jilin, Zhejiang and  Shandong provinces, the Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) said in a  statement.

Inspectors will monitor key environmental issues, oversee  local improvements and push local government accountability.

China launched a series of central environmental inspections  in 2016 after decades of growth left the country saddled with problems such as  smog and contaminated soil.

During the last round of inspections into seven provincial  areas, China held over 4,660 officials accountable for poor environmental  protection work.

The teams have found common problems, including illegal  projects in nature reserves and a lack of eco-friendly facilities.

Last year, inspectors looked into 33,000 cases, imposing  fines totalling 440 million yuan (65.4 million U.S. dollars). A total of 720  people were detained and almost 6,500 people held accountable.

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