Chinese Solar Company Vows Toxic Cleanup After Four-Day Protest

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A Chinese solar panel company has apologized for a devastating toxic spill at one of its manufacturing plants in August and vowed to clean up the pollution after four days of protests outside its headquarters.

According to reports, solid waste contaminated with high levels of fluoride leaked from a plant owned by JinkoSolar Holding Company in Haining, located about 80 miles southwest of Shanghai, and was swept into a nearby river by heavy rains on Aug. 26. Residents say the pollution caused a massive fish-kill in the river, and that pigs whose sties were washed with river water also died.

Following a four-day protest that at times became violent, a JinkoSolar spokesman admitted that the incident occurred and vowed “appropriate” steps to clean up the contamination. “We cannot shirk responsibility for the legal consequences which have come from management slips,” the spokesman, Jing Zhaohui, told a news conference. The demonstrations in response to the spill are the latest example of growing public outrage over pollution in China. Last month, thousands of demonstrators forced the closure of a paraxylene plant in northeastern China’s Dalian.

Article appearing courtesy Yale Environment 360.

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Yale Environment 360 is an online magazine offering opinion, analysis, reporting and debate on global environmental issues. We feature original articles by scientists, journalists, environmentalists, academics, policy makers, and business people, as well as multimedia content and a daily digest of major environmental news. Yale Environment 360 is published by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Yale University. We are funded in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The opinions and views expressed in Yale Environment 360 are those of the authors and not of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies or of Yale University.

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