If you live in one of the compounds on the outskirts of Shanghai, this is probably no news to you. Many of the owners of villa’s in suburban Shanghai are digging their own wells to save on water costs. Construction companies only charge RMB 300-RMB 1000 to provide you with your private well, so the money can be earned back relatively quickly. But the result be may less desirable: not only does the ground water level go down, but if too much water is pumped out (not unlikely with 1000’s of people doing this), there may be structural damage to the houses if the land subsides. According to the Shanghai Daily the government is not doing much: the Land Resource Administration Bureau only takes action if an illegal well is reported, it does not send out inspector to do checks.