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Factories dumping untreated waste in Tengger Desert

2014-09-09 11:03 CNTV Web Editor: Li Yan

A report in the Beijing News says a number of chemical plants are continuing to dump untreated waste in the Tengger desert, in China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. That's despite similar media reports from four years ago, which led to a number of companies shutting down.

The desert borders the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region and Gansu province. A newly released video shows the area dotted with pipes, all dumping contaminated waste-water. It's created many cesspools the size of football fields... and people living near the area say the smell of the waste spreads for several kilometers.

Local residents say that after the liquid evaporates, heavy machinery is used to bury the residue. Ground water levels have also declined by at least 40 meters over the past couple of years, after more than 40 wells were dug by the companies.

The area used to be a pastoral region, until the chemical plants were opened. The regional government says it's set up a special investigation group to look into the crisis.

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