Over the years, illegal occupation, sand excavation and illegal construction have plagued the environment and navigation safety of the Yellow River. On December 12, 2018, China launched a campaign to protect the river and the ecological protection and high-quality development of the Yellow River has since become a national strategy. Along the Yellow River, which stretches 5,460 kilometers, five protection plans were released to tackle water loss and soil erosion to improve the environment and protect endangered wildlife in the region. Water shortages are still a major challenge in the river basin despite continuous water quality improvements. Per capita water resources in the area are only a fifth of the national level. To make matters worse, safe disposal of wastewater is still an enormous problem and only about half of the wastewater is properly treated.