Sure seems like it lately. Scientists have called the Yangtze River (heard of it?) “cancerous.” This is not good news. The Yangtze is China’s longest river. It is also Shanghai’s main source of drinking water. Pop Quiz: How many tons of wastewater flowed into the Yangtze in 2004? If you guessed 16.75 billion, you win! Fifty kuai for a bottle of Evian doesn’t sound so bad now, does it? And if you think this story is just propaganda dreamed up by the evil Western press, think again. It looks like it was first reported on by Xinhua. Does this make Shanghai a really big “cancer village“?
In other cancer news: 10 percent of children’s clothing manufactured in southern China contains a cancer-causing dye; a recent survey showed that “80 percent [of Shanghai residents] think smoking should be banned except in designated locations in public”; and believe it or not, in 2008 Beijing is planning a “smokeless Games.”
Photo of the Yangtze River by Abby’s Mom.