Video Of The Week - Why Is China's Yangtze River Turning Crimson?

By Meera Dolasia on September 10, 2012

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Asia's longest river, the 6,418 km Yangtze, that originates from the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau glaciers and meanders through southwest, central and eastern China before ending in the East China Sea, is normally known as the Golden Watercourse, thanks to its pale brown color. However, since September 6th, the river has taken on a bright red hue and nobody is sure why!

While the color is most prominent in the area around Chongqing, it has been seen in other parts of the river too. Initially, some thought it may have to do with the algae that cause red tides. But experts say that is not possible given that the organisms cannot survive in fresh water.

Chongqing's environmental officials are attributing it to red sand that has been washed downstream thanks to the recent flooding. However, some people are not convinced and think that it is a result of extreme pollution.

As for the residents of the area? Some are keeping away, while others are treading in carefully to collect a sample of this unusually opaque water that resembles tomato juice. And then there are those like this farmer, that are going about their business as though nothing has changed!

Resources: ibtimes.com, telegragh.co.uk

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344 Comments
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  • uh ohSaturday, October 11, 2014 at 4:46 pm
    my mom is from chongqing.
    • happypug12
      happypug12Saturday, September 27, 2014 at 4:21 am
      Is it still red to this day?
      • poshgirlFriday, July 25, 2014 at 10:08 pm
        not good
        • wanda
          wandaFriday, April 4, 2014 at 11:49 am
          i hope that all the people in china are very blessed with health and wellness and peace and love. i love everyone to death in china. and i mean to death. plz stop the use of coal!!
          • nataliehSaturday, March 15, 2014 at 9:46 am
            im from china
            • wanda
              wandaFriday, April 4, 2014 at 11:44 am
              well, how are things there? are you living there now? do you have to walk around, even in your own home, in a gas mask? how aweful!!! it makes me want to cry!! God bless china.
            • nataliehSaturday, March 15, 2014 at 9:46 am
              omg
              • mlbacespdjcjrFriday, December 13, 2013 at 7:23 am
                they cant catch fish in tamato juice
                • lolTuesday, November 5, 2013 at 3:24 pm
                  i like tomato juice but not that type
                  • capedadvenger
                    capedadvengerFriday, January 31, 2014 at 1:30 pm
                    tomaot paste wow sounds cool
                  • beachtan
                    beachtanTuesday, August 20, 2013 at 1:55 pm
                    Awww poor china
                    • hey
                      heySunday, July 21, 2013 at 6:32 pm
                      ew... that's gross.. and weird

                      Vocabulary

                      convincedenvironmentalhueopaqueorganismspollutionprominent

                      Geography

                      Chongqing, ChinaEast China Sea

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