China China releases white paper on POPs for 2004–2024

China releases white paper on POPs for 2004–2024

In May 2024, China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and other central government departments published a white paper on persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the country for the 2004–2024 period. The white paper shows established mechanisms, implemented measures and future plans of the Chinese government for POPs control.

The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants was adopted May 22, 2001 in Stockholm, Sweden, and came into effect May 17, 2004. In China, it was ratified at the 10th session of the 10th Standing Committee of the National Peoples’ Congress, and came into force Nov. 11, 2004.

As one of the first countries to sign the convention, China takes POPs control very seriously. It has been trying hard to protect human health and the environment from the harm of POPs in cooperation with the international community. China has made a variety of efforts to control POPs while implementing the amendments made to the convention. Some of the POPs control efforts shown in the white paper are outlined below.


Policy development

The Chinese government has prepared a national implementation plan for POPs control as well as additional plans to it, and developed POPs control mechanisms for the phase-out of agrochemical and industrial POPs, reduction of dioxins, removal and disposal of PCBs, and environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous waste and contaminated land. The government made the New Pollutant Management Action Plan in 2022 to set out comprehensive measures against new pollutants including POPs.


Development of laws and regulations

Serious environmental pollution related to POPs pollution control activities, POPs import and export, and the illegal discharge or disposal of toxic or hazardous substances including POPs are subject to criminal penalties under revised laws and regulations on water pollution, air pollution, soil contamination, solid waste pollution, marine environment protection, Yangtze River protection, Yellow River protection, clean production, product quality, foreign trade, agrochemicals, pollutant discharge permits, and so on.

The production, import, processing and use of new pollutants and agrochemicals with POPs properties are managed strictly using positive lists for market access.


More effective management to prevent and control dioxin pollution

Dioxin discharge limits have been introduced and incorporated in the pollutant discharge permit scheme in key industries including steel, sintered steel, recycled nonferrous metals, pulp and paper, petrochemical, hazardous waste incineration and household waste incineration.


More effective disposal of POPs waste

The National List of Hazardous Waste1 and the Identification Standards for Hazardous Wastes2 set out categories of and identification methods for POPs waste regulated by the Stockholm Convention.

China is implementing more effective POPs waste sorting and disposal, with special attention to the manufacturing, distribution and use of POPs such as DDT, hexachlorobenzene, chlordane, mirex, heptachlor, toxaphene, endosulfan and hexabromocyclododecane.



The white paper (in Chinese) is available at


1 国家危险废物名录

2 危险废物鉴别标准

Author / Responsibility

LIU Yake

Researcher, Research & Consulting Dept. EnviX Ltd.

Business Performance

worked as a research assistant at Department of Environmental Planning and Management, School of Environment, Tsinghua University for 4 years, and then joint in Envix in April, 2022, currently is mainly responsible for consulting on EHS regulation compliance in East Asia.


MA, Environmental Econimics, Hiroshima University