19 February 2018
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas

  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia

  • » 04/21/2017, 14.39


    Toxic ponds near Tianjin. Contradictory campaign against pollution

    For years, chemical and galvanic companies have been pouring waste into three ponds as large as 42 soccer fields. Those who have exposed the problem are silenced. Meanwhile, the Ministry for Environmental Protection has found that 69% of Beijing-Tainjin-Hebei companies do not observe anti-pollution rules. A prize to those who denounce it.

    Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Ministry for Environmental Protection has admitted for the first time that there are nearly 20 huge ponds in Tianjin and Hebei Province where companies have dumped untreated wastewater for years.

    The admission which came two days ago, was caused by the complaint, the day before, lodged by a group of environmental activists, the Chongqing Liangjiang Voluntary Service Center. They have discovered at least three ponds, two in Hebei and one in Tianjin, containing toxic and acidic waters. According to Caixin magazine, who reported news with photos, the surface of the three ponds is about 300,000 square feet, the space of about 42 soccer fields.

    The authorities state that they have known about the problem and the polluted area since 2013 and that in 2016 the reclamation was carried out on 15 of the incriminated ponds. However, they did not report the polluters responsible for the pollution. Activists suspect that they are chemical and galvanic firms in the area that have made the ponds toxic. These companies are now closed, but the pollution has remained.

    Curiously, the day after the ministry's admission, the environmental group’s Wechat account (the Twitter of the Chinese) was closed by authorities.

    The group's silencing is in direct contradiction to the decision taken by the Ministry at the beginning of the month to launch a campaign to "normalize" the pollution situation in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, one of the most polluted areas in China. In an investigation of 4077 companies, it turned out that at least 2808 violated the anti-pollution rules, or 69% of the total.

    Just today, Beijing's environmental government office outlined some guidelines in which it promises a prize of 50,000 yuan (about 6700 euros) for anyone who reports serious environmental violations, including the dumping of hazardous wastes such as radioactive materials. For those who report companies who pollute or tamper with inquiries, there is a cash reward of 3,000 yuan (about 400 euros). 

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version

    See also

    28/12/2005 CHINA
    90% of cities have polluted underground water

    The waterbeds supply 70% of drinking water and 40% for agricultural irrigation. Official sources say the situation will get worse in the absence of radical intervention to make maximise resources.

    12/05/2005 CHINA
    Pearl River pollution a serious concern
    Water treatment plants are built only in cities, whilst farmers must put up with polluted water. Official reports indicate that the Pearl River dumps more 133,000 tonnes of waste into the sea.

    14/06/2017 14:28:00 CHINA
    Some 70 per cent of companies still violating pollution regulations in Beijing, Tianjin, and Hebei

    After two months of government inspections in 28 cities in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei area, some 13,785 companies (70.6 per cent) have failed to meet emissions standards or lack pollution control equipment.  Particulate matter should have been reduced in the smoggy region by 25 per cent this year over 2012 levels, but the target has not been met. One third of the deaths in the region are related to pollution.

    24/03/2005 CHINA
    Economic development and the pollution of water resources

    24/03/2017 12:58:00 CHINA
    A "green necklace" of trees against air pollution in Beijing

    Hebei Province plans to use wetlands around the capital. The latter however suffers from water shortages. Beijing’s pollution crisis could be tackled by closing a significant number of steel factories in the region, but powerful interests and state enterprises have opposed such a move.

    Editor's choices

    The tears of Chinese bishops. A portrait of Msgr. Zhuang, bishop of Shantou

    Padre Pietro

    A priest of the official Church, recalls the 88 year old bishop that the Vatican wants to replace with an illegitimate bishop, to please the regime. Mons. Zhuang Jianjian became an underground bishop at the behest of the Vatican in 2006. Card. Zen and Msgr. Zhuang, image of the faithful Church, "which provokes an immense sadness and a sense of impotence". The hopes of card. Parolin to console "the past and present sufferings of Chinese Catholics".

    Card. Zen on the bishops of Shantou and Mindong

    Card. Joseph Zen

    The bishop emeritus of Hong Kong confirms the information published in recent days by AsiaNews and reveals details of his conversation with Pope Francis on these topics: "Do not create another Mindszenty case", the primate of Hungary whom the Vatican forced to leave the country, appointing a successor in Budapest, at the will of the communist government of the time. 


    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.


    News feed

    Canale RSSRSS channel 


    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®