Zinc Agony in Hezhang
A zinc production facility in Magu
(Beijing) -- For more than a decade, many residents in Aweizhai, a small village deep in the mountains of Magu Township, Hezhang County of Guizhou Province, have complained of intense pains in their shoulder muscles, arms, lower back, legs and knees. They've been diagnosed with rheumatism by local doctors.
However, a 2007 study by researchers at Guizhou Academy of Environmental Science and Design found the soil in Hezhang contained excessive levels of cadmium. Caixin learned from local villagers that roughly 1,200 mu out of the total 25,500 in Magu Township were used for zinc extraction plants or waste dump sites. Local authorities have refused to release precise figures for polluted soil area, but experts say the symptoms that the villagers feel are similar to that of cadmium contamination.
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