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China desert lake shrinks by one-third in 13 years: Xinhua
by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) Nov 28, 2013

China's largest desert freshwater lake has shrunk by one-third in the last 13 years, state media said Thursday, as the country's breakneck modernisation continues to damage the environment.

Northern China's Hongjiannao Lake covers 32.16 square kilometres (12.86 sq miles), less than half its size in 1969 and two-thirds of its area in 2000, Xinhua news agency said.

"Experts said human activities including reservoir construction, mining and agricultural irrigation are the main causes for the sad phenomenon," Xinhua added.

The lake, in Shaanxi province on its border with Inner Mongolia, could vanish completely in a few decades, state media has previously claimed.

China's rapid industrialisation has caused massive environmental damage and is a major source of discontent.


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Rice scientists ID new catalyst for cleanup of nitrites
Houston TX (SPX) Nov 27, 2013
Chemical engineers at Rice University have found a new catalyst that can rapidly break down nitrites, a common and harmful contaminant in drinking water that often results from overuse of agricultural fertilizers. Nitrites and their more abundant cousins, nitrates, are inorganic compounds that are often found in both groundwater and surface water. The compounds are a health hazard, and the ... read more

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