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Another factory found illegally dumping waste in Kaohsiung area river

KAOHSIUNG--Another industrial company has been found dumping untreated wastewater into Kaohsiung's Hou-chin River with toxicity far exceeding the pollution left by major firm Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc. (ASE), an official said Sunday.

Lien Yi, an electroplating company based in the southern city's Renwu District, was caught pumping wastewater directly into a storm drain Friday, according to Chen Chin-der, director of Kaohsiung's Environmental Protection Bureau.

The discovery was made after inspectors found water samples taken near the plant showed readings that were over legal limits, he said.

Tests on a sample taken when inspectors later raided the factory showed a nickel content of 518 ml/L, more than 500 times over the legally permissible level of 1 ml/L.

The figure also exceeds the 4.18 ml/L level found in the wastewater from ASE's plant in the nearby Nanzih District.

Chen and his colleagues went to Lien Yi on Sunday to find the factory already shut down.

A company executive claimed the discharge of untreated wastewater was accidental, while the company decided to stop operations due to “stepped up inspections and imminent mandatory shutdown.”

The Environmental Protection Bureau on Friday ordered Lien Yi to shut down unless it can provide a reasonable explanation for its action within ten days, as stipulated in the Water Pollution Control Act.

ASE has been fined and its executives face criminal charges for polluting the Houjin River, which is used for irrigating hundreds of hectares of farmland.

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