Pollution in China’s southern region of Guangxi sparked panic buying of bottled water this week after a mining firm dumped toxic cadmium into a river. Authorities found waste discharged into the Longjiang river has caused excessive levels of cadmium some three times the government’s accepted limit. The pollution killed many fish and officials have warned local citizens not to fetch water from the polluted sections of the river. The local fire department has put 80 tonnes of neutralizers, made from dissolved aluminum chloride, into the River to dissolve the contamination …
According to the World Health Organization, cadmium is a carcinogen which can seriously damage the kidneys, bones and respiratory system. It has several industrial applications, ranging from steel to batteries. Rapid economic growth and lax enforcement of environmental protection laws have caused most waterways in China to be heavily contaminated with toxic waste from factories and farms. Meanwhile, the market watchdog has already ensures that the prices for bottled water remain stable and supplies are sufficient in case the pollution prompts even more panic buying. The local government has begun looking for alternative water sources, fearing the pollution belt may spread further.
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