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Digital Subscriptions > China Report > Issue 49 > AN AVOIDABLE ASSAULT

AN AVOIDABLE ASSAULT

Total disregard for the environment by industry and government has led to a landscape pockmarked with pools of pollution

Fetid Pools

View of a pit of about 170,000 square metres of waste, Nanzhaofu Village, Langfang City, Hebei Province, April 20, 2017
Photo by cfp

On April 18, 2017, photos of a cluster of red and yellow pools of polluted water around a village in Dacheng County, Hebei Province, went viral online after being released by an environmental protection NGO. The largest pit had a surface area of more than 170,000 square metres of industrial waste, equal to 24 standard football pitches.

On April 19, the Ministry of Environmental Protection made an announcement to confirm the pollution and pledged to launch a joint investigation. Three days later, Tian Weiyong, head of the Environmental Inspection Bureau under the ministry, said the pools were the result of the illegal discharge of industrial pollutants and the government will “crack down on the act at the national level and show no tolerance to such incidents.”

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About China Report

The Belt and Road forum held in Beijing in May heralds China's strategy of globalisation 2.0. How much China has invested in the BRI? How can other countries along the routes join in and benefit from the opportunities? (p.20-25) Technologically China has often been perceived as playing the catch-up game. Not in Artificial Intelligence, which the country's tech giants are spearheading with some success. (p. 34-43) A migrant worker has taken the country by storm in her Dickensian essay about her hard life in modern Beijing. (p.52-55)
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