A day after strange, white foam appeared during the city’s first rainfall following the deadly August 12 explosions, anxious residents of Tianjin worried about environmental contamination are again rattled by the sudden appearance of tens of thousands of dead fish in the city harbor.
The dead fish appeared yesterday about six kilometers away from the blast sight.
The director of the Tianjin Environmental Monitoring Centre, Deng Xiaowen, said his department will immediately look into it. Other agencies such as the fisheries department are also said to be investigating.
Deng said there isn’t enough evidence yet to blame the chemical explosion for the dead fish, adding it could be from any number of reasons (which is in itself alarming). Some reports say the waters around Tianjin are so polluted anyway fish often die at this time of year.
At the present time, wWater in Tianjin harbor is locked behind a sluice, preventing it from escaping into the neighboring Bohai Sea. Tests on the water indicate it does not meet environmental standards.
Meanwhile, the chief engineer at the Tianjin Environmental Protection Bureau and head of the environmental protection team at the scene of the explosion Bao Jingling said the blast area is under military control as they test for chemicals and other pollutants. This past Monday, Bao reassured the people of Tianjin that there was no threat to their health in the wake of the explosions. “People do not need to worry about the air and water quality around the blast zone,” said Bao.
Bao pointed out that no harmful pollutants, including sodium cyanide, were found in samples collected from rivers, waste water and the sea. Meanwhile, the State Oceanic Administration said no harmful pollutants were found in the Bohai Sea around Tianjin in tests as of Sunday.
So far 114 people have died from the explosions and 69 remain unaccounted for.