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I kind of have to translate the following sentence:

为保证市民生活用水, 哈尔滨市从省内各市(县)调水, 由各区对口接收省内各市(县)的送水。

For some reason I find this sentence to be kind of awkward and tough to translate, especially with last sub sentence and the infamous 对口 construction. I don’t think it’s even that difficult, I’m just stuck on it. 74我了!

Here is what I have:

“In order to make sure (guarantee) that the citizens (have) domestic water, the city of Harbin transferred water from every “xian” and every city in the province…..”

And, while I am ad it, here’s another one that just blows my mind:


I had and argument with a fellow student about the meaning of this sentence. I say that the possibility (the 有可能) is the possibility of the river becoming polluted, while she maintains that it is the possibility of people’s health being affected. Which is it?

(After reading it time and again, I think she might be right after all).

Thank you so much in advance!


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I interpreted this one as:

"In case there's a possiblity of water polluton that may affect (or "carry an effect that may cause a discrepancy in") the [city] residents' health..."

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Sorry, had to delete the other part of my post to make sure I get it right this time


It basically means that each of the districts within Harbin city is being delivered water to by an outside (of the city that is) assigned region or 县 of the province Harbin is in.

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The first one you are pretty much there, but the 对口 bit I haven't seen before. I think it is something like 'as needed' or 'according to their needs'. You need to not the 区 bit, which will refer to the different districts of Harbin. Then the final part will be something like 'Each district of Harbin has recieved the water it needs from cities or counties in the province.'.

However, I'm not sure about 对口.

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Not too familiar with 对口 either, but I think in this case it means the "supply and demand match". But you can probably ignore it for the English translation.

Be careful of the word 各 - it's not always as inclusive as the English "each" or "every". It's usually better (safer) translated as "various". It's highly unlikely that Harbin is receiving water from each and every city and county in the province. (BTW, what exactly does 各市(县) mean? 'Cities AND counties', or 'county level cities (县级市)'?)

Still a bit clumsy, but I would translate your sentence as:

"In order to secure [enough] water for domestic use, water is being transferred to each of Harbin's districts from various cities and counties in Heilongjiang Province."

(Without seeing the rest of the article I'm not sure whether the tense should be past or present progressive...)

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Now my english is not quite it, but the meaning of the first sentence should be like this: In order to ensure drinking water for the population of the city, the city government of Harbin requisitions water-supply-realottments from every city (and xian) within the province, thus every district is matched with a city (and xian) which delivers the water.

For the second sentence I agree with your colleague!

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