China: Water pollution due to corruption

China is to spend more than US$1 billion to clean up a river where a toxic spill last year cut off water for millions, state media said on Thursday, as auditors revealed that past funds for clean-up campaigns had been misused.

Reuters is reporting quite a lot about corruption scandals related to water issues, revealing that:

...some 2.4 billion yuan (US$299 million) were allocated for water treatment, the National Audit Office said in a report on its Web site (www.audit.gov.cn).

...of that, 1.6 billion yuan was embezzled to fund other projects, set up businesses, build offices or buy cars.

...pollution is so severe that the Ministry of Water Resources estimates 40 percent of water in the country's 1,300 or so major rivers is fit only for industrial or agricultural use.

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