Dead pigs collected by sanitation workers from Shanghai's main waterway on Monday.
Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images
Authorities have pulled more than 2,800 dead pigs out of
Shanghai's main source of tap water – the Huangpu River. And they're
still counting, according to reports on Monday.
has raised fears of drinking water contamination in China's most
populous city, although state media reports that officials have run
tests and determined that so far there's nothing to fear.
Frank Langfitt says Shanghai officials first discovered the pig
carcasses last Tuesday in one of the Huangpu's tributaries and that the
city has been using dozen of barges to pick up the bloated swine. The
number of carcasses was sure to rise, he says.
According to Xinhua, a sample of river water has tested positive for porcine circovirus, which affects pigs but cannot be spread to humans.
preliminary inquiry has found that the dead pigs originated in Zhejiang
Province, which is south of Shanghai and upstream on the Huangpu, The New York Times reports.
The newspaper says:
Chinese are expressing growing concern over air, soil and water
pollution. In recent weeks, several official news organizations have run
articles and editorials casting a spotlight on pollution of some of
China's major waterways. In one prominent case, a 39-ton chemical spill
on Dec. 31 from a fertilizer factory in Shanxi Province affected two
other provinces downstream. Local officials had delayed reporting the
chemical spill for five days.
A statement issued Monday by the
Shanghai government and posted on its Web site said that there were
piglets as well as adult animals weighing hundreds of pounds. Residents
in Songjiang District, the area southwest of downtown Shanghai where
most of them have been discovered, said this was not the first time they
had seen dead pigs in the Huangpu River. But this time, the number was
higher than in the past, according to the city government's statement."