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Excessive blood lead caused by Haijiu Battery Co., Ltd. in Deqing, Zhejiang, China

Hundreds of people living near a battery manufacturer in Zhejiang province have been found to have dangerously high levels of lead in their blood, 200 people blocked the roads and stormed the factory.


In People's Hospital of Deqing, there were 17 children with two distinctive features: pale and lively, some of the symptoms of excessive blood lead. These children have more similarities. They are all the children of employees of Zhejiang Haijiu Battery Co., Ltd., a manufacturer of lead-acid batteries for motorcycles and electric bikes. "The excessive blood lead of adults may not matter, what if the child have sequelae?" One of the parents was very anxious (cited in [1]). Thanks to the medical check of a child in late March of 2011, the issue of excessive blood lead was uncovered, otherwise, the battery company would have been successfully listed in the stock market in August of this year. [1] Since March, about 100 villagers living around the battery factory have successively went to the Third People's Hospital of Deqing County to do blood lead testing. And most of them were found with excessive blood lead. [2] At this moment, the company did not report to the relevant governmental departments, instead, it tried to pacify and seal the issue through varying amounts of money delivered to the affected households. [11] 

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Excessive blood lead caused by Haijiu Battery Co., Ltd. in Deqing, Zhejiang, China
State or province:Zhejiang
Location of conflict:Xinshi Town, Deqing County, Huzhou City
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Industrial and Utilities conflicts
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Manufacturing activities
Other industries
Specific commodities:Lead
Chemical products
Project Details and Actors
Project details

The project started construction in August 2003 and was implemented in three phases. The first workshop had a new factory building of 12,000 m2(1.2ha), which was put into operation in December 2004. The second phase assembly workshop and dormitory building covered 17,000 m2 (1.7ha). Construction began in July 2005 and was put into operation in May 2006. The third phase packaging workshop and dense electricity workshop covered 18400 m2 (1.84ha) and was put into operation in May 2007. The total investment of the project is 50 million yuan (7.4 million USD), of which 6.385 million yuan (9.5 thousand USD) was invested in environmental protection and greening. The designed production capacity was 10.5 million high-performance sealed lead-acid batteries, but taking into account the pressure on the environment of the workshop, the second production workshop was abandoned, and the partial board would be purchased. [1] The factory had an annual output of 450 million yuan (67 million USD) and 1000 employers.[7]

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Project area:4.74
Level of Investment:7,400,000.00
Type of populationRural
Affected Population:2,000-3,000
Start of the conflict:03/2011
Company names or state enterprises:Haijiu Battery CO. LTD. (Haijiu Battery) from China - polluter
Relevant government actors:-Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection (as Ministry of Ecology and Environment since March 2018 )
-The government of Deqing county
-The government of Xinshi Town
-Public Security Institution
-the Government of Huzhou City
-Environmental Protection Bureau of Huzhou City
-Environmental Protection Bureau of Deqing County
-Health Bureau of Deqing County
-Zhejiang Provincial Party Committee
-Provincial Government of Zhejiang
-Provincial Environmental Protection Department of Zhejiang
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:-Friends of Nature
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityMEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
Reaction stageMobilization for reparations once impacts have been felt
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Industrial workers
Forms of mobilization:Blockades
Development of a network/collective action
Objections to the EIA
Street protest/marches
Property damage/arson
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality
Potential: Air pollution, Waste overflow, Food insecurity (crop damage), Soil contamination
Health ImpactsVisible: Occupational disease and accidents, Other Health impacts
Potential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide
Other Health impactsExcessive blood lead levels of children and adults. For children, excessive levels might affect their nervous system, causing a decline in IQ or in related capabilities.
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood, Other socio-economic impacts
Potential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Violations of human rights
Other socio-economic impactsextra treatment fees and caring time, less income for the families; expulsion of rural households to the urban areas in seeking of safer living environment for the children.
Project StatusStopped
Conflict outcome / response:Compensation
New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Project cancelled
Withdrawal of company/investment
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:The incident caused unemployment, and according to a parents, the treatment compensation from the company was not enough in a long time run. There were risks for the future development of the children with excessive blood lead.
Sources & Materials
Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

[1]海久血铅污染调查:“生产环境”法规一片空白(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[5]浙江德清血铅超标事件反思(上) 我们必须反省什么?(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[6]查处浙江德清血铅事件 环保部对湖州区域限批(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[7]MEP Made Public the Investigation and Sanction on Blood Lead Pollution Incident in Deqing County of Huzhou City, Zhejiang Province (accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[8]浙江海久血铅污染再调查 受害者后续赔偿难(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[3]环保部:浙江湖州德清332人血铅超标(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[4]Lead Poisoning in China: The Hidden Scourge(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[16]浙江德清血铅超标事件调查(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[15]Dozens near battery plant lead poisoned(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[9]浙江德清多名大人儿童血铅中毒 4岁女童超过6倍(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[13]浙江德清血铅事件续:副县长等8名干部受处分(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[10]浙江环保标兵海久电池酿血铅大祸 瞒报花钱封口(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[11]“环保标兵”制造百姓“重金属”生活(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[12]德清血铅超标事件反思:环评做了为何还出问题(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[14]德清血铅超标人员接受治疗 海久公司拆涉铅设备(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

[2]浙江德清多名儿童血铅超标(accessed on 2019/02/26)
[click to view]

Related media links to videos, campaigns, social network

[视频]血铅招标事件调查:环境评价失实 113户村民被遗忘
[click to view]

China shuts battery factories due to lead poisoning
[click to view]

[视频]血铅招标事件调查:再现血铅超标 企业被责令停产
[click to view]

“My children have been poisoned” public health crisis four Chinese provinces – Human Rights Watch
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:EnvJustice, ICTA-UAB/CY
Last update05/03/2019
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