China will spend 126.7 billion yuan on cleaning up the Bohai Sea before 2020, according to a marine environmental protection plan of the area published by the National Development and Reform Commission.
Bohai Sea borders Hebei, Shandong, Liaoning and Tianjin, which have a population of over 60 million. The plan will cover 77,000 sq km of maritime waters and 13 coastal cities with a total area of 132,100 sq km, the plan said.
By 2012, about 45.6 billion yuan will be invested in the control of agricultural pollution, upgrading sewage and garbage treatment facilities, industrial and port pollution prevention, restoration of aquatic ecosystem, and wetland protection.
The target is to reduce pollution by 10 percent, cut energy consumption per unit of GDP by 20 percent, and improve water efficiency for industrial use by 30 percent of the 2005 level, the plan said.
Another 81 billion yuan will be utilized for environmental protection projects between 2012 and 2020. It aims to set up a comprehensive prevention system of agricultural and industrial pollutants.
"Bohai Sea is one of the worst polluted seas in the country," said Li Xinmin, a senior official from the Ministry of Environmental Protection. "With the investment being allocated to detailed projects, it is expected that the marine environment will significantly improve."
The polluted area of Bohai Sea measured 13,810 sq km, or 18 percent of the total area, according to the State Oceanic Administration.
The continuously reducing amount of fresh water inflow has resulted in severe seawater encroachment at coastal areas of Bohai Sea.
Pollution from toxic heavy metals, such as mercury, lead and arsenic in some areas of the Bohai Sea also threatens marine life.