From The South China Morning Post, via A Glimpse of the World:
The central government’s admission yesterday that the Songhua river was severely polluted in a chemical factory explosion last week confirmed what many people had suspected. A statement issued by the State Environmental Protection Administration explained how the pollution had spread and did not seek to play down the seriousness of the problem. This was a welcome move to clear up uncertainty. But it was overdue. The announcement came 10 days after the blast in Jilin . More worryingly, the chemical plant had denied any pollution spill. And officials downstream in
Harbin had initially claimed that the city’s water supply was being suspended in order to conduct maintenance – when the real reason was the pollution.