China Oil Spill Hits the Yellow River

On Monday, Chinese state media reports said that an oil spill caused by a cracked pipeline in Northern China had reached the Yellow River. This is yet another threat to the nation’s drinking water, purported by an environmental accident.

According to the China News Service, four days after the pipeline ruptured, water quality monitors at the Sanmenxia water reservoir detected traces of diesel in the water.

The accident happened on Wednesday when one of the pipelines which belong to the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) ruptured. The CNPC is the nation’s top producer of oil.

News reports indicated that close to 150,000 litres of diesel leaked from the cracked pipeline – although state and CNPC officials declined to comment on the actual size of the spill.

CNPC in a statement on their website said that most of the diesel which leaked out had been cleaned up, controlling the pollution spread.
The blame fell on a construction company which was building a project near the underground pipeline, which transported diesel from China’s Gansu to Central Hunan province. The diesel spill happened in Shaanxi, which is located around 70 kilometres from the Yellow river.

To prevent any further damage, the Henan provincial government put together a special working group to monitor water quality in a bid to ensure that the drinking water was safe.

Situated around 200 kilometres upstream from Zhengshou, Henan’s provincial capital, the Sanmenxia reservoir relies on the Yellow River for drinking water for a certain percentage of the city’s 2.4 million people.