Jiangnan, CHINA. The delta of the third longest river in the world is also known as ¨the Yangtze golden triangle”. The area covers about 99,600 km2 and is one of the most concentrated metropolises on Earth. It has a population of over 105 million people and over twenty relatively developed major cities, among which include Shanghai –the biggest of the Chinese cities with a population over 20 million people- and one of the more bustling sea ports on Earth. The delta region is vital economically and has represented more than 21% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product since 2004.
If there is something that exceeds the vertiginous economic growth of the region, it is pollution. According to a study by WWF, the Yangtze River’s delta is the major source of marine pollution across the Pacific Ocean. With the passage of time, the problem has risen. Pollution today is more than perceptible, the air is heavy and dirty, the color of the ocean has changed. Pollution has not only killed fish, birds, and more, but in turn has contaminated foodstuffs and many lands are no longer suitable for grain, vegetables and fruit crops. The government should react quickly. China should not allow that one of the most prosperous and densely populated territories to suffer these terrible conditions.
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All images © Contemplate the Planet
Photographer: Javier Pérez-Cuadrado de Santiago