Made in … hazardous waste?

Chinese factories leach hazardous substances into delta

Photo By Daniel Berthold

Greenpeace recently released a report accusing factories in southern China of poisoning the Pearl River Delta (pictured).

The conservation organization analyzed 25 samples of wastewater from several industrial sites near the river, which is the third largest in the country and located in an area where nearly one-third of the country’s exports are made. According to the tests, a wide range of hazardous chemicals, including heavy metals known to cause brain damage, exist in the delta.

“What is very disturbing is that, once released, it is almost impossible to remove these hazardous substances from the environment,” Kevin Brigden, a Greenpeace scientist, told The Associated Press.

Greenpeace also called on local companies to be aware of the effect “Made in China” products—which are sold to consumers worldwide—may have on China’s waters.