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Nanking Massacre’s haunting still afresh, even after 80 years

It was the second Sino-Japanese War, which started in 1937 and resulted in a large number of deaths at the hands of the Japanese army.

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Nanking massacre
Nanking Massacre is considered a blot on the Japanese army. Wikimedia commons
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NEW DELHI: On December 13, Chinese marked the 80th anniversary of the Nanking massacre. This day is considered as a very unfortunate knot between the relationship of Japan and China.

The event was attended by the Chinese President Xi Jinping in Nanking city. It was the second time that Chinese president attended the event, since first national memorial day for the massacre in 2014. But surprisingly, Jinping didn’t deliver any speech.

Generally, Jinping leaves no chance to address his people on such occasions. But this time, he refrained himself from making any comment. This act may be due to the ongoing cordial relationship between China and Japan, which maybe get into turmoil due to any political
statement.

The Japanese supreme, Shinzo Abe, and Xi Jinping met last month on the sidelines of a regional summit in Vietnam. Both of them greeted each other well and looked comfortable exchanging a few words.

It was the second Sino-Japanese War, which started in 1937 and resulted in a large number of deaths at the hands of the Japanese army. The people involved in the massacre included Chinese war prisoners and civilians.

Nanking cty
Chinese war prisoners and civilians felt the burnt of massacre

The Japanese impounded the Nanking city on December 13. 1937 and the rest is history. The atrocities of the Japanese army, accompanied by brutal methods led to large-scale uncalled death.

As far as the death toll of the Nanking Massacre incident is concerned, both the nations share a different point of views. Chinese historians claim the figure of more than three lakhs. Meanwhile, Japan counts the number ranging from few thousands to around two lakhs. But some conservative Japanese scholars even deny the very act of massacre even.

With the agenda of peace and regional balance in mind, both the nation will try to bury the past ghost of Nanking city in the coming years. Such incidents are really very hard to fade away from the memories of people of any nation.

To aim for the global presence, China will definitely try to mend its relations with its neighbors and by digging into such historical events will not help towards it.

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Scientists: China’s Ban Causes Plastic To Pile Up, Nations Must Reduce Usage

The study was published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances

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Scientists: China's Ban Causes Plastic To Pile Up, Nations Must Reduce Usage
Scientists: China's Ban Causes Plastic To Pile Up, Nations Must Reduce Usage, Pixabay

China’s decision to stop accepting plastic waste from other countries is causing plastic to pile up around the globe, and wealthy countries must find a way to slow the accumulation of one of the most ubiquitous materials on the planet, a group of scientists said.

The scientists sought to quantify the impact of the Chinese import ban on the worldwide trade in plastic waste, and found that other nations might need to find a home for more than 122 million tons (110 million metric tons) of plastic by 2030. The ban went into effect Dec. 31, 2017, and the stockpiling trend figures to worsen, the scientists said.

Wealthy countries such as the United States, Japan and Germany have long sent their plastic recyclables to China, and the country doesn’t want to be the world’s dumping ground for plastic anymore. The study found China has taken more than 116 million tons (105 million metric tons) of the material since 1992, the equivalent of the weight of more than 300 Empire State Buildings.

The change is forcing countries to rethink how they deal with plastic waste. They need to be more selective about what they choose to recycle, and more fastidious about reusing plastics, said Amy Brooks, first author on the study and a doctoral student in engineering at the University of Georgia. In the meantime, Brooks said, more plastic waste is likely to get incinerated or sent to landfills.

“This is a wake-up call. Historically, we’ve been depending on China to take in this recycled waste and now they are saying no,” she said. “That waste has to be managed, and we have to manage it properly.”

plastic cups
plastic cups, Pixabay

The study was published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances. Using United Nations data, it found that China has dwarfed all other plastics importers, accounting for about 45 percent of the world’s plastic waste since 1992. The ban is part of a larger crackdown on foreign garbage, which is viewed as a threat to health and environment.

Some countries that have seen an increase in plastic waste imports since China’s ban — such as Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia — are already looking to enforce bans of their own because they are quickly becoming overburdened, Brooks said.

The study illustrates that plastic, which has a wide array of uses and formulations, is more difficult to recycle than other materials, such as glass and aluminum, said Sherri Mason, who was not involved in the study and is the chair of the geology and environmental sciences department at the State University of New York at Fredonia.

Many consumers attempt to recycle plastic products that can’t ultimately be recycled, Mason said. One solution could be to simplify the variety of plastics used to make products, she said.
“We have to confront this material and our use of it, because so much of it is single use disposable plastic and this is a material that doesn’t go away,” Mason said. “It doesn’t return to the planet the way other materials do.”

The plastics import ban has attracted the attention of the U.S. recycling industry. The National Recycling Coalition said in a statement in mid-May that it must “fundamentally shift how we speak to the public” and “how we collect and process” recyclables.

Also read: A Secret Ingredient Of Your Favorite Sushi: Microplastic

“We need to look at new uses for these materials,” said Marjorie Griek, the coalition’s executive director. “And how do you get manufacturers to design a product that is more easily recyclable.” (VOA)