A small village in eastern Shandong once famed as a “longevity town” is now a “cancer town” after villagers began dying one after the other from cancer in the last three years. The cancer is believed to have been caused by the inhalation of illegally dumped toxic chemicals:
The incidence of cancer at several villages in Laizhou, a county-level city in the province was several times higher than normal, the Economic Information Daily said yesterday, citing a doctor in Yantai, a coastal city administering Laizhou.
Residents in Haicangyi Village said a strong chemical odor, which they had been living with for eight years, caused eye, nose and throat irritation, “blinding and choking” them at night. “We have to cover our eyes and noses with wet towels when sleeping,” one said.
An environmental protection expert in Yantai told the newspaper that the odor was poisonous phenol-contaminated gas, stemming from agricultural chemical waste, which contributed to respiratory, blood and liver cancers.
Shandong Keyuan Pharmaceutical Co Ltd and Laizhou Tengfei Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, both are located near the villages, were to blame for the pollution, the report said.
According to the newspaper, both of the chemical plants produced 2, 4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2, 4-D), a systemic pesticide, but without a license.
Cancer-causing pharmaceutical plants. Hmm…
Lots more cancer here.