The Ministry of Ecology and Environment has confirmed that 30,000 cubic metres of chemical waste and other hazardous matter has been found hidden in the banks of the Yangtze River.
After repeated efforts by the public, which included written reports and first-hand witnesses, an investigation into the Taixing Chemical Industrial Park, Taizhou, Jiangsu, began in July of 2016. After 2 years on the job, it has been revealed that companies within the park have indeed been burying chemical waste in the soil near the river’s embankment. The surrounding land and groundwater are deemed to have been ever since contaminated, reports Jiangsu Sina.
Initial evidence was a strong odour which led excavators to unearth “black waste”. In an attempt to prevent the odour from spreading throughout the surrounding area, inspectors suspended further excavation and began working with government officials to develop a strategic plan.
The Ministry of Ecology and Environment have said that the relevant parties in Jiangsu Province were alerted, and are continuing to dealing with such illegal dumping issues by conducting in-depth interviews and ongoing evidence collection. The Ministry continues to urge local authorities to create constructive plans to clean up environmental pollution as soon as possible.
Further inspections revealed the Taixing Chemical Industrial Park has a history of dumping chemical waste and burying it inside the river bank, dating back as far as the early 1990s.
The Taizhou investigation is what appears to be the second major environmental bust for Jiangsu province, since Beijing implemented new rules and regulations in April of 2018. As a result, a company in northern Jiangsu’s Xuzhou city was recently fined ¥80,000 for the unsafe storage of chemicals.
As Jiangsu shifts its focus from industrial factory production, which put a heavy pollution strain on the environment, to more of a high-tech hub, the province is already showing visible signs of clearer days. With the Yangtze river of strategic import to Jiangsu, so it is necessary that strict guidelines are met with regards to cleaning up not only the air, but land and water too.