Children's lead poisoning forces closure of Anhui battery plant
The Huaining county government in China's Anhui province's has shut down a battery factory after the environment protection bureau found the plant had caused the lead poisoning. The move comes despite the fact that, after re-examining 23 children suspected of having suffered lead poisoning in Gaohe township, provincial authorities said that amounts of lead in their blood were within normal levels.
Xinhua News Agency reported that an Anhui health department had tested 280 children, of whom 28 had been hospitalized for symptoms of lead poisoning including babies from as young as nine months to 16 years old.
Local officials said on Thursday that an unlicensed battery plant next to the community was to blame for the lead poisoning. Borui Battery Co Ltd, which is separated from the community only by a narrow road, produced excessive lead pollution that put local children's health at risk, the Huaining county government said in a press release.
In July 2010, four children living near a battery plant in East China's Jiangsu province were found to be suffering from lead poisoning. In South China's Guangdong province, a battery factory was shut down in December 2009 after at least 25 children living nearby were found to have excessive lead levels in their blood.