Report: Two-Thirds of China’s Underwater Resources Unfit For Human Use

o-CHINA-SPACE-900Flag_of_the_People's_Republic_of_ChinaWe have followed the horrific environmental problems in China after decades of the communist putting industrial production above every health and environmental priority. That is beginning to change as cancer rates continue to soar and the country becomes increasingly unliveable in parts, including Beijing. When stories come out, the pollution and health dangers are often on a scale that is literally breathtaking. This week had another report from the environmental ministry itself — long viewed as hiding data and underplaying environmental damage. The report says that roughly two-thirds of China’s underground water, and a third of its surface water, were rated as unsuitable for direct human contact in 2014.

Only 3.4 percent of surface water meets the highest of six categories as “Grade I” resources. Some 63% are classified as meeting Grade III and fit for human contact and use. This is notably a further diminishment since 2013 when 71.7 percent of surface water in “Grade III” or above.

It is always uncertain how much we can rely on the data from the Chinese government, one of the worst environmental violators in the world. However, even the government is now admitting a massive loss of water resources to pollution.

The loss of underground water resources is truly incredible and shows the loss from pollutants percolating through the soil and destroying aquifers that are essential for drinking water. The report shows 61.5 percent of the 4,896 underground water sites as either “relatively poor” or “very poor”.

Those suffering through this growing pollution problem is obviously the least wealthy in the country who continue to draw from water resources deemed unfit for human consumption.

Source: Trust

65 thoughts on “Report: Two-Thirds of China’s Underwater Resources Unfit For Human Use”

  1. Isaac,
    And 36 years ago the Department of Education was born and with that federal bureaucracy has come a steady decline in education. You got your big government and the results belie your rhetoric. Time to return to the limited government that actually unleashes the American potential.

  2. Again, it’s not the viability of being intelligent that is at question. It’s not that ‘doing things the right way’ is less cost effective and will result in chaos and corruption. Small agribusinesses serving the immediate surrounding areas are more beneficial for the people but less beneficial for the global corporations that own the politicians and thereby control the structure of our government.

    In today’s era of technological and scientific marvels, ability to immediately communicate, and ability to educate not only on demand but on any subject whatsoever, the opportunity to divest ourselves of global corporate control is growing. Yet global corporate control is growing. This points to control at the top, not democratic control from the roots. For a plant to grow and be healthy it needs good soil and you water the roots, not the leaves. Yet idiots like those that gave us Reaganomics would argue the opposite. Actually we are the idiots for believing it. They are the ones getting rich.

    The model for today’s America is this huge pot of gold that in actuality belongs to all, having fat fingered hands dipping into it from the top causing some of the gold to fall out over the side. The workers scramble for what drops out as the fat fingers move the gold and the control around at the top.

    I don’t know what is in the new trade agreement Obama and the GOP are trying to push, however, it may be nothing more than the US trying to keep up with the global status quo. Perhaps it is time to reestablish a status quo here. It’s not simply a question of open borders or closed borders but a question of allowing what comes in or goes out to do so to the advantage of the American worker, not the corporation.

    One of the most fearfully believed axioms of our society is that somehow we cannot do without those at the top, that without a unique Steve Jobs or a specific Rockefeller we would still be living in the dark ages. There were and are thousands of Steve Jobs out there to take any available place at the top. It used to be that the top couldn’t replace the work force so it had to include the workforce in the decision making and design. Then America was democratic and had a substantial middle class, a powerful engine that ran the country. The hands that dipped into the pot of gold came from the majority of the upwardly mobile. The latest news on this includes the out sourcing to third world countries of work Americans used to do and now the importing of third world workers to do the work of Americans who are being laid off.

    Disney just imported several hundred techies from India to fill positions of Americans they laid off. As part of the severance pay agreement the laid off workers are obligated to train those taking their jobs. Disney stock rises. What is interesting is that thirty years ago the government of India established a university system to train all these imports. India is smarter than the US. Where’s our government established system training people for the jobs of tomorrow, today, yesterday? Oh yeah, we don’t want no stinking government getting involved in our basic rights and freedoms.

    Come the Revolution!!!!!!!

  3. Darren … does “Pescetarianism” include Dover Sole, Lobster, Crab, Shrimp, and Craw Dads? I might be able to do that if easily available, which it is here abouts…several seafood only stores near-by. Kind of pricey however.

    1. Aridog: Pescetarianism includes those animals, generally it is anything marine or freshwater. I suppose one could consider it from the approach of there being different styles such as Vegetarian, Lacto-Oval Vegetarian (Milk & Eggs), or Vegan is to Vegetarianism. Some view the pure form of Pescetarianism as being that in which only seafood is eaten and no vegetables but this is more about nomenclature than actual practice as almost all Pescetarians eat vegetables and such.

      A large percentage, at least from the cursory reading I have noted, is that those choosing to have this diet do so for heath reasons or for personal taste.

      If interested I have a simple dietary guide that I use

      • Protein sources are seafood & egg yolks, primarily wild caught salmon purchased in-season and frozen for use during the year. I buy it all at once to save money. I a wary of farm sourced fish. I eat tuna and similar types of fish only sparingly due to mercury issues. I will eat shellfish only if it is USA sourced. I limit my consumption due to cholesterol and cost issues
      • The foundation of the diet is vegetable based. I buy a share from a Community Sourced Agribusiness that is a half mile from where I live. When I need to go elsewhere I prefer organic and Non-GMO items. I don’t trust GMO food, not only because of the modification of the plant but many of it is designed to be resistant to some nasty pesticides that are used symbiotically in their harvesting. The worst is the Round-Up Ready crops which allow the use of a scorched earth herbicide known as Round-Up which kills almost everything else.
      • Avoid dairy if possible
      • Consume grains sparingly
      • Fruits. Here there needs to be some variance in source. But the best is to buy freshly picked in large quantities and eat during the season
      • Do not add salt to food
      • drink water for hydration and avoid fruit juices which are loaded in sugar
      • Avoid sugary foods
      • Do not use butter in cooking. Substitute olive oil. In fact, baking, steaming and broiling is preferable to pan frying. A trick I use is to crumple up aluminum foil then unraveling it before placing it onto a baking sheet and cooking the food in the oven. Doing this suspends the food on the tiny folds of the foil so that it doesn’t stick easily. This way you can avoid using oils.
      • Lastly, and this is very important, do not buy processed food. When you go to a run of the mill grocery store, buy around the edge of the store not the middle. Look at the notion of the Nutrition Label as being a Warning Label. If it has a Nutrition Label it is likely going to be processed and not good for you. This food is literally scientifically engineered for convenience, shelf life, cost cutting, and designed to appeal strongly to human food cravings. It incorporates a lot of low cost fillers in entries such as grains, sugar, fats where if you were to remove these you would quickly discover that the core portion of the food can actually cost more in terms of dietary benefit than whole foods. The food is almost always unhealthier than what one can prepare for themselves. One of the best examples of this is mass market breakfast cereals marketed to children. Most is grain based, which is not always bad but there is a high amount of corn which is cheap but metabolically can lead to increased weight gain. The food is loaded with sugar and preservatives. It is carefully marketed to appeal to children so that they will encourage their parents to buy it due to its sweetness and packaging. Parents are let in because the food warning (Nutrition) label is stocked with all sort of nutrients such as vitamins and minerals that parents are duped into believing this food is good for the children.
        If the cereal has a dozen 100% RDA vitamins and minerals but loaded with sugar and additives it is an unwise choice to make.

        One has to ask themselves if they really need to have chemical additives to their food. That is what you get with processed food. In fact, don’t believe that corporate meat can’t be suspect either. Sometimes this meat, while you believe it is unmodified such as chicken breasts, is injected with saline. Saline?? This is done for several reasons: People naturally crave sodium, water adds a cheap mechanism to increase the weight and hence the price, and there is a bit of a preservative factor. But in order to determine if your meat has this one must look very carefully on the product packaging to read the fine print that it has this. Some try to even describe this as a benefit to increase the taste. The medical community can almost always agree that saline in chicken breasts is not healthy for people to regularly consume. Corporate meat distributors know this but instead put it in, so are they truly interested in the best interests of your health? Probably only if it does not pose too much of a cost liability.

      • So, there it is. What really concerns me is that I read recently somewhere that about 70% of the food intake of Americans was through packaged and processed food. Caloric consumption is growing rapidly. We have hazardous public health matter that in a decade or so is going to be extremely costly in terms of money and quality of life. It is for this that we really need to consider what we put into our mouths and take personal responsibility for these decisions.

  4. I’m lucky, I suppose, that I live in a community with a plethora of small mom & pop groceries, all within walking distance if I weren’t so frickin’ lazy 🙂 I consider a trip to Costco Judi’s job, and any trip to a supermarket something to be tolerated occasionally, like a root canal. Go to a “mall”…never unless life itself depends upon it. Odd that I developed this aversion since J.L. Hudson’s Northland Mall was among the first nationwide and very hear my home…in its open air days it was pleasant, not much different than neighborhood stores. Now, as Macy’s, not so much.

    1. Aridog – my wife’s parents ran a mom-and-pop until it was run out of business by the City. She has great stories of reading all the comic books before they were sold. 🙂 They either lived in back or above the store.

      Where we live now there are no mom-and-pop stores. However, there are several supermarkets on my wife’s way home. 🙂

  5. Darren
    “It is for reasons such as this that I never allowed a business of mine to source food or beverage products from China.

    Since most food products contain water as a large ingredient this pollution issue could be more magnified in scope.”
    = = =

    Have you seen this?
    WTO Rules Against Country-of-Origin Labeling on Meat in U.S.

    Do you know where your chicken meal came from and what water it was raised on?
    Odd, multi-national corporations preventing Americans the Right to know…

    1. Max-1,

      Yes, I read of the WTO ruling earlier. I disagree with it as there are a litany of other products that are required to list country of manufacture or origin. I disagree completely with the WTO’s ruling. In fact my wife, who resided in West Germany during the Chernobyl disaster, said during that time the notion of origin labeling was critically important information as you might guess. This made upon her a lasting impression, so much so that she will not buy potatoes sourced from Benton, Franklin, or Walla Walla counties due to their proximity to the Hanford Reservation.

      It is coming to the point where buying locally from small agribusinesses for me is paramount. I am a pescetarian but she likes occasionally other meat. For this we buy from a local family owned meat market that is more careful the quality of their products.

  6. Report: Two-Thirds of China’s Underwater Resources Unfit For Human Use

    Shouldn’t we concern ourselves with water quality at home before we go casting stones abroad?

    National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program

    The National Water-Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA) provides an understanding of water-quality conditions; whether conditions are getting better or worse over time; and how natural features and human activities affect those conditions. Regional and national assessments are possible because of a consistent study design and uniform methods of data collection and analysis. Monitoring data are integrated with geographic information on hydrological characteristics, land use, and other landscape features in models to extend water-quality understanding to unmonitored areas. Local, State, Tribal, and national stakeholders use NAWQA information to design and implement strategies for managing, protecting, and monitoring water resources in many different hydrologic and land-use settings across the Nation.

    Groundwater Quality in Principal Aquifers

    1 of Every 5 groundwater samples from parts of aquifers used for drinking water contained a contaminant from a geologic or manmade source at a level of potential concern for human health

    Mercury in the nation’s streams: levels, trends, and implications
    Circular 1395

    By: Dennis A. Wentz, Mark E. Brigham, Lia C. Chasar, Michelle A. Lutz, and David P. Krabbenhoft

    Mercury is a potent neurotoxin that accumulates in fish to levels of concern for human health and the health of fish-eating wildlife. Mercury contamination of fish is the primary reason for issuing fish consumption advisories, which exist in every State in the Nation. Much of the mercury originates from combustion of coal and can travel long distances in the atmosphere before being deposited. This can result in mercury-contaminated fish in areas with no obvious source of mercury pollution.

    Pesticide Trends in Major Rivers of the United States, 1992–2010
    By Karen R. Ryberg, Aldo V. Vecchia, Robert J. Gilliom, and Jeffrey D. Martin

    Pesticides strongly dominated by agricultural use—cyanazine, metolachlor, atrazine, and alachlor—had widespread agreement between concentration trends and agricultural-use trends. Pesticides with substantial use in agricultural and urban applications—simazine, tebuthiuron, Dacthal, pendimethalin, chlorpyrifos, malathion, diazinon, fipronil, carbofuran, and carbaryl—had concentration trends that were mostly explained by a combination of agricultural-use trends and concentration trends in urban streams that were evaluated in a separate companion study.

    Pesticides in U.S. Streams and Rivers: Occurrence and Trends during 1992–2011
    Wesley W. Stone *†, Robert J. Gilliom ‡, and Karen R. Ryberg §
    † U.S. Geological Survey, 5957 Lakeside Boulevard, Indianapolis, Indiana 46278, United States
    ‡ U.S. Geological Survey, 6000 J Street, Sacramento, California 95819, United States
    § U.S. Geological Survey, 821 East Interstate Avenue, Bismarck, North Dakota 58503, United States
    Environ. Sci. Technol., 2014, 48 (19), pp 11025–11030
    DOI: 10.1021/es5025367
    Publication Date (Web): September 11, 2014
    Copyright This article not subject to U.S. Copyright. Published 2014 by the American Chemical Society

    During the 20 years from 1992 to 2011, pesticides were found at concentrations that exceeded aquatic-life benchmarks in many rivers and streams that drain agricultural, urban, and mixed-land use watersheds. Overall, the proportions of assessed streams with one or more pesticides that exceeded an aquatic-life benchmark were very similar between the two decades for agricultural (69% during 1992−2001 compared to 61% during 2002−2011) and mixed-land-use streams (45% compared to 46%). Urban streams, in contrast, increased from 53% during 1992−2011 to 90% during 2002−2011, largely because of fipronil and dichlorvos. The potential for adverse effects on aquatic life is likely greater than these results indicate because potentially important pesticide compounds were not included in the assessment. Human-health benchmarks were much less frequently exceeded, and during 2002−2011, only one agricultural stream and no urban or mixed-land-use streams exceeded human-health benchmarks for any of the measured pesticides.

    Quality of Water from Public-Supply Wells in the United States, 1993–2007
    Overview of Major Findings
    By Patricia L. Toccalino and Jessica A. Hopple

    Contaminants that originate entirely or primarily from man-made sources
    accounted for about one-quarter of contaminant concentrations greater than
    human-health benchmarks in source-water samples and were detected in nearly
    two-thirds of the samples, predominantly in samples from unconfined aquifers

  7. The economic ignorance of the liberals here is astounding. Of course, if the only income you have comes from the govt., then that is the extent of your economic world. People on the dole are an unhappy lot. We were meant to produce something good. If people on the dole would just get out of their apartment and do some volunteer work, produce some good, they might not be so depressed, lonely, and needy.

  8. Example of a question to my parents: did you ever see a mountain lion up close? f not, I can show you a denning spot where they hang out. Just follow me up to 12,000 feet or so. Response: No. Question: what happened to you [vis a vis loss of weight]? Me: nuttin’. 🙂 Hey you wanna’ see….

  9. I wonder how much of Chinese “pollution” of water generally is caused by “night soil” used to fertilize veggies? Stuff runs off some where. When I lived near-by, we valued that 120 foot deep well as a necessary implement of life. Those turds floating by in run off channels were disconcerting, I tells ya’, and to be avoided no exceptions.

    PS: And why did no one tell me about Giardia on my first trip to the highlands of the rocky mountain west? That stuff can wreck any flatlander. I am sure it amused my friends there when I carried 3 pairs of briefs in my saddle bags, plus a roll of TP, for any trip over 20 minutes 🙁

    On long trips on horseback I always had to carry an extra bag, saddle bag (unless rolled up in my bedroll) or on my back. Needless to say, I periodically had to make a “pit stop” and then catch up with the group. Dang, I think even my horse(s) were amused. I assure y’all I was not. Oddly, being 13 & immortal, I didn’t give it a passing thought otherwise. When my parents saw their kid after a long summer, at 30 lbs less than before, they were stunned. Me, I had places to go, things to see…so I did.

  10. Karen,
    I don’t believe it has anything to do with ‘reminding’ but rather convincing. From my numerous attempts to assert what you and I believe to be true, many in this blog would argue we are simply wrong.

  11. Olly, we, and our politicians need to be reminded that the government works for us, not the other way around.

  12. Here is an article about the 10 most toxic cities:

    Note the connection we all have, globally. One of the sites is toxic from the tidal wave of e waste, such as from computers and cell phones. How many understand that our tech toys have toxic components, as do solar panels? Then there are the tanneries. We either buy shoe leather created through toxic means, or synthetics also created using chemicals. As I mentioned in our connection to Chinese trade, there is no “us and them”

    In my opinion, the best remedy is capitalist democracy. A government will not be so willing to pollute and poison its own people if it is answerable to it. Those willing to engage in jobs that expose them to toxins, such as burning off the covering of e waste, are the poor. And the best proven remedy for poverty is capitalism.

  13. Karen,
    The one issue that I cannot wrap my head around is why, in the debate over the rights of the people would ANYONE argue in favor of them being alienable? Essentially, what would inspire people to deny they have any rights that aren’t “granted” by government? This is not the same as arguing for or against big government but for or against the principle that we have rights independent of any government. The image this generates is of the concentration camp survivors that would not believe or could not trust they were free when the guards were gone and the gates were open.

  14. China pollutes because it has the power to lie to its people with impunity. It called it “fog” for decades. Dissenters are imprisoned. On the one hand, they are unanswerable to their own people because they are not a democracy. On the other hand, they must all recall in the back of their minds that it was a revolution that put them in that seat of absolute power. And if the people die in enough droves, another revolution will take them out.

    A communist country is quite obviously not Capitalism. The State owns most industry. The biggest reason for its behavior is that it is not a democracy, free speech is a crime, and criticizing the government that is poisoning you will land you in prison.

    The only reason why they had to admit that it was not “fog” was because our embassy published the smog level on the Internet.

    1. Karen – In China, the country or provinces or cities run their territory. The businesses are privately owned. In some cases, the Communists have a major piece of the business if it deals with the US.

  15. The hard truth is that consumers will avoid food and children’s toys made in China, paying a premium, but for just about anything else price trumps all.

    We vote for higher minimum wage, robust worker protections, but in the end, we don’t buy our products. An American made crib costs a fortune. My American clothespins are the only things that will keep my wash from falling off in our high winds, but they cost something like 10 times as much the ubiquitous, cheap Chinese made ones.

    I loathe the environmental catastrophe that is China, but I acknowledge that I can turn over a mug, or multiple objects in my house, and see “made in China.” There are many things that are literally not made in the US anymore because they can’t keep their doors open competing with cheap Chinese goods. I hate this hypocrisy.

    It would be nice if we had less “stuff”, but it was better made. We can say we hate these polluters, but how many of us have the money to make every single purchasing decision American made? And what to do about the components that are only made in China? It’s a quandary, to be sure. And with the Tragedy of the Commons, we all pay for the pollution in our air and water.

  16. BTW there’s not much difference between a Corporate State and a State Corp. It’s all autocracy.

  17. Well, that’s what happens when a government becomes unanswerable to its people.

    There are those who think they can repeat the Communism Experiment and inexplicably get a different result. The technical term is “fools.”

    You cannot give the government ultimate power and expect it not to corrupt.

  18. So why is their so much turmoil? We are a house divided. Our rule of law is run by the law of rulers and supported by those that want to be ruled. Pathetic!

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