Translated from French by Sianny Rooney via RT France
Citarum River in Java Island, Indonesia has become the biggest septic tank. The habitants come here for fishing not fish but garbage.
“We have one river and it is the most polluted river in the world”, said ecologist Andri Gumelar. 280 tonnes of toxic waste is dumped in the Citarum river every day by companies and the river habitants also use it as a place to throw garbage. But the same river habitants also use the water from Citarum river for their daily use (drinking, taking bath, washing, etc) and for plantation irrigation. The situation is getting worse by the year under the observation of concerned ecologists around the region.
Citarum River irrigates 4000 rice fields and provide drinking water to 25 million people. The Java island is the most populated island and also one of the poorest in the world. Industries from textile, pharmaceutical, food industry throw their waste water in Citarum river. Since it became an industrial region in 1980 because of the attractiveness of cheap labor, the soil starting to become infertile. In 2009 the liquid waste starting to infiltrate the soil and the soil become white like salt and can’t be use anymore to plant rice. The rice fields have become contaminated. The result is affecting the economic condition of the rice farmers and its habitants. Unemployment rate in the area has increased too.
Textile industry is the main industry providing jobs in the island and bringing billions of USD to the country’s economy but also the enormous quantity of lead, chrome, zinc, polonium that are directly dumped into the main source of drinking water in the island.
In 2008 the Indonesian government invested almost 30 billion USD in the sanitation program of the river until today without real success. A new government sanitation campaign of the river was launched in early 2018. The Indonesian government would like to make the water in Citarum river drinkable in 7 years. We take sample water 10 months after the program launch. But until today the result has not been published, the result is done after 6 months but there was an order from the superior not to give the result findings.
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