The mayor of Hezhou city in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region on Tuesday apologized to residents for a river pollution case in a public statement.
A mining company discharges sewage directly into Haodong River, a branch of Hejiang River, on July 9. [Photo/Xinhua]
Bai Xi said in the written apology that loopholes in his government’s environmental protection and management work have led to river contamination.
He said he and his government felt sorry that the river pollution not only does harm to the city’s reputation, but also causes losses and inconvenience for local residents.
Bai added that he has also apologized to residents whose lives were affected by the polluted river in neighboring cities and counties.
The pollution was discovered after local authorities in Fengkai County in Guangdong Province, which neighbors Guangxi, said on Saturday that water in a section of the Hejiang River had been tainted by upstream pollution.
The county warned local tap water plants and residents living in the lower reaches of the Hejiang and Xijiang rivers to avoid drinking water or consuming products derived from the river.
Cadmium and thallium levels at a reservoir located on the river were four times and 1.3 times the recommended level, respectively, as of Monday, according to Yang Zhongxiong, vice head of Hezhou’s environmental protection bureau.