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Greenpeace report claims chemical accidents in China killed 200 in first 8 months of 2016

22 September 2016

According to a Greenpeace report quoted by the New York Times, 199 have been killed and a further 400 injured in the production, storage and transportation of chemicals in China from January to August 2016. The investigation, which relied on government statistics, found that there were 232 chemical accidents over the period.

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The report claimed that regulation of China’s massive chemical industry was still lax and inconsistent a year after the deadly explosion in the port city of Tianjin which killed 181 and injured almost 800.

“China’s chemicals industry is the largest in the world, but it is appallingly underregulated,” Cheng Qian, a Greenpeace activist who studies toxic chemicals, said in the report. “The government must take urgent action.”

According to the report, many of the accidents involved highly toxic substances, the report found, and more than half occurred while workers were transporting chemicals. Explosions were the cause of two out of five deaths.

Chemical accidents in China often cause casualties because chemical plants are built close to residential areas, schools or major roads, in violation of safety regulations. Most chemical producers are in densely populated areas along China’s eastern coast, the report said.

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