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China Youth Daily: Environmental Protection Draws the Most Public Attention

A China Youth Daily team that monitors online public opinions issued a report on February 27. The report, based on a calculation of the amount of keyword-tagged information that has appeared at various online platforms since March 2013, came up with the top ten hot topics of public opinion, namely: environmental protection, anti-corruption, social security, food and drug safety, the stability of (housing) prices, Internet regulation, reform of the household registration system, judicial reform, health care reform, and social mores.

The issue of "environmental protection" rose to the top of the list, with three times more online discussions than the No.2 issue of anti-corruption. Of the 68 million online discussions, more than 70 percent (70.8 percent) of the netizens focused on PM2.5, a measure of particles less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter found in the air, which are believed to pose the greatest health risk. With over 48 million discussions on the matter it had more than a one third (35.6 percent) jump over last year. China Youth Daily received responses to over 1,000 questionnaires on how to deal with the air pollution. Approximately one third (29.3 percent) of the respondents called on the Government to strengthen its regulatory responsibility.

The topic of "anti-corruption" and "social security" ranked No. 2 and No. 3. on the list. The amount of total online discussion was about 22 million each, with a difference of only 3 percent. These two issues have made the list three years in a row, but the change this year is that "anti-corruption" jumped to No.2.

Source: China Youth Daily, February 27, 2014