“At the junction of Ningxia province and Inner Mongolia province, I saw a tall chimney puffing out golden smoke that have covered the blue sky, large tracts of the grassland have become industrial waste dumping field; unbearable foul smell caused people to cough; Surging industrial sewage flew into the Yellow River…” recorded famous Chinese environmentalist and social documentary photographer Lu Guang.
Various forms of pollution (especially air pollution and water pollution) have increased as China is being industrialized. Although China has taken some action, overall the situation keeps deteriorating. Here are some appalling photos showing the heavy pollution in China.
Pollution in China is one aspect of the broader topic of environmental issues in China. Various forms of pollution (water pollution, air pollution, etc.) have increased as China is being industrialized. The industrialization has caused widespread environmental and health problems.
Although China has responded with increasing environmental regulations and a build-up of pollutant treatment infrastructure which have caused improvements on some variables, but overall the situation keeps deteriorating due to the short-sighted leaders who concentrate on economic development and unawareness of the public of the long-term loss caused by environmental problems. And environmental laws as well as all other laws in China are often not strictly followed.
Following are some appalling photos taken by famous Chinese photographer and environmentalist Lu Guang showing heavy pollution in China and the environmental disasters of current China.
Lu Guang (卢广) was born in Zhejiang province and encountered photography at the age of 20 when working in a silk factory. He studied at Beijing's Tsinghua University from 1993 to 1995 and has since worked as a freelance photographer.
Skilled at social documentary photography, his insightful, creative and artistic work often focused on “social phenomena and people living at the bottom of society”. Many of his award winning works focused on social issues like, “gold rush in the west”, “drug girl”, “small coal pit”, “HIV village” and so on.
In 2003, Lu was awarded the first prize for a story about contemporary issues from World Press Photo for his photographs of Henan Province peasants who had been infected with HIV after selling their blood.
His picture story on drug addicts in southern Yunnan was exhibited at Visa pour l'Image that same year. In 2005, he became the first photographer from China to be invited by the US Department of State as a visiting scholar.
In 2008, he was awarded Gruner + Jahr's Henri Nannen Prize for photojournalism. In 2009, he received the $30,000 W. Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography for his project "Pollution in China".