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February 24, 2014

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Home » Metro » Environment

Salt tide worst on record, hits 2m locals

ABOUT 2 million people have so far been affected by this year’s salt tide, the Shanghai Water Authority said.

As of yesterday, the effects of the tide had been felt for 20 days, the longest run in Shanghai’s history, officials said.

Based on the available data, the situation is likely to continue into next month, they said.

“Almost 2 million people living in parts of Baoshan, Putuo and Jiading districts have been the worst affected,” an unnamed official said.

The water authority will need another couple of days to determine if the situation is likely to get worse, he said.

Despite the salt tide’s extended run, which increased the concentration of chloride in reservoirs at the mouth of the Yangtze River and gave local drinking water a salty taste, it is not a threat to people’s health, the official said.

At Chenhang Reservoir in Baoshan District and Qingcaosha Reservoir in Chongming County, the chloride concentration has exceeded the national limit of 250 milligrams per liter since 7pm on February 3, with a peak of more than 3,000 milligrams.

Before this year, the previous record for a salt tide run was just under 10 days in 2004.

To deal with the situation, the authorities said they will cut the water supply from affected reservoirs and increase reliance on other sources, including the Three Gorges reservoir.

Salt tides, which usually occur between October and March, are annual events as lower water levels in the Yangtze allow salt water to move upstream.



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