2.800 decomposing pigs found in a Shanghai river

12 Mar

More than 2,800 decomposing pigs have reportedly been pulled from the upper reaches of Shanghai’s Huangpu River which is already hugely polluted and a source of drinking water for some of the mega-city’s 23 million inhabitants. It remains a mystery where the pigs have come from, even though this is not the first time pigs have been found in this river.

Although there was no trace of foot and mouth, blue-pig ear disease or swine fever there was traces of porcine circovinus, a disease that affects pigs but is not believed to infect humans. There was good effort by the government in clearing the river of all the dead pigs, however this is another case of serious pollution of its rivers, possible caused by large corporations and lack of environmental regulation. Last year Chinas vice-minister for water resources, Hu siyi, admitted that 20% of his country’s rivers were “too toxic for human contact” while 40% were severely polluted.



3 Responses to “2.800 decomposing pigs found in a Shanghai river”

  1. zifeng kang March 13, 2013 at 7:41 pm #

    Interesting article, almost 3000 dead pigs are found in the river, but the local government has no ideal where they came from, is that real no idea or just some ways of hiding the truth or just excuse. The dead animals can carry out lots of bugs and disease which may harmful to people, other animals and environmentally friendly. And it is costly to the government to clean the water, and the polluted water is no able to drink and use in other purpose such as generating electricity. Water shortage has become a serious problem to all human-beings, and in china there are 40% water is no usable and it will eventually go to the sea, therefore more ocean resources are affected and cause the more severe problems. For those people who disposal dead animals into the water, it not just ethical issues, but also harm the whole development of society, the government should set up numbers of rules, laws and regulations to against people, and also improve the whole Chinese people knowledge of why environmentally friendly is important and its consequences.

    • pcm1c12 March 14, 2013 at 11:27 pm #

      This is indeed another good example of the Chinese polluted rivers. The amount of found pigs in the river has in meanwhile increased to about 6000 pigs now! Because traces are found of a pig virus, this virus could be the reason for the companies throwing the pigs into the water. I agree that the reason this can happen is the absolute failure of oversight of the government, which is supposed to be trying to prevent more pollution. As said above by Kizing, the government should set up rules, laws and regulations against those people responsible for these actions. But perhaps more importantly, the government should create some social mechanism which compensate pig breeders whenever diseases are found, to control the spread of diseases and losses. This positive approach might be even more effective, since it also tries to control diseases.
      At the bright side, this new problem puts again even more emphasis on the big pollution problems in China. This media attention of particular problems are putting global pressure on the Chinese government. This is why the media attention is possibly the strongest weapon of the Chinese citizens.

  2. Zoe Skousbo April 9, 2013 at 4:08 pm #

    There is an air of uncertainty surrounding this event, directed primarily at local Chinese officials in the area and their apparent lack of knowledge at how a reported 16,000 decomposing pig carcasses found their way into one of the countries vital waterways. Despite its grotesqueness the rotting pig flesh however, only adds to an already hazardously polluted river that the Shanghai Municipal Water Department still maintains is safe for human consumption, despite some sections of the river being “inky black, covered in a slick of lime green algae and smelling like a blocked drain.” Encouragingly, an increasingly environmentally conscious Chinese public has been voicing their concerns not just with the fate of the pigs themselves, but also with the governments “sluggish” response and their failure to disclose information to the public. Such incidents however have potential to reoccur due to the massive pig industry in the area, with 300,000 dead pigs requiring disposal every year. Further to this, around a thousand decomposing ducks were recently dragged from a river in South-West China. Hopefully, the fate of these unfortunate animals will highlight an industry that is repeatedly beset by black market dealings as well as reiterating the plight of China’s rivers which are constantly used as dumping grounds for thriving industry’s waste, adding to the danger for the reported 320 million Chinese without access to safe drinking water.


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