China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment on May 8 published an article that describes the details and penalties of seven cases of automated monitoring regulation violations, including fabrication of data, by key pollutant discharging entities, in an effort to ensure automated monitoring is performed and to prevent such illegal conduct.
China’s Water Pollution Control Law (水污染防治法)and Air Pollution Control Law (大气污染防治法) require key pollutant discharging entities to install automated monitoring equipment and connect it to the Ministry of Ecology and Environment. Three of the published violation cases are outlined below.
Automated monitoring data fabrication by an Anhui-based rubber manufacturer
On July 17, 2019, the environmental audit team of Anhui Province conducted an inspection of a rubber manufacturer and found that the automated monitoring equipment’s lower threshold of oxygen concentration in the flue gas for stopping the boilers had been changed to 15%, although the standard threshold is 19%. This company had fabricated monitoring data as well. The team also discovered illegitimate modifications in the settings of its industrial computers for automated monitoring.
Under the Air Pollution Control Law and other regulations, a fine of 2 million yuan (approximately $310,000) was imposed on the company, and the responsible person was subject to one year in prison with a two-year suspension and a fine of 150,000 yuan (approximately $23,000).
Automated monitoring data fabrication by a Jilin-based food company
On May 14, 2020, the environmental audit team of Jilin Province conducted an inspection of a food company and found that this company put the sampling tube of automated monitoring equipment for chemical oxygen demand, ammonium nitrogen and total nitrogen in a fixed sample container in order to fabricate monitoring data.
Under the Water Pollution Control Law and other regulations, the company was ordered to correct the violation and pay a fine of 450,000 yuan (approximately $70,000), and the person at the company responsible for environmental protection was put in a five-day administrative detention.
Obstruction of automated monitoring by a Henan-based construction material manufacturer
On March 20, 2020, the environmental audit team of Henan Province conducted an inspection of a construction material manufacturer and found that this company soaked the filters of the flue gas automated monitoring equipment in 84 disinfectant (mainly composed of sodium hypochlorite) to meet the emission standards.
Under the Air Pollution Control Law and other regulations, the company was ordered to stop production and pay a fine of 300,000 yuan (approximately $47,000), and its legal representative was placed under criminal detention. The public security organ is currently investigating the case.
The full article (in simplified Chinese) is available at