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10. Riachuelo River - Argentina
La Matanza River, (in English: The Slaughter River) better known as El Riachuelo (in English: The Little River),
is a water course of 64 km (40 mi) in Argentina, that originates in the Buenos Aires Province and defines
the southern boundary of the Buenos Aires federal district.
The Spanish word boca (in English: river mouth) gives the name to the La Boca neighbourhood, and brought
about the Boca Juniors football club, located near the place where the river flows into the Río de la Plata
Bridge on Riachuelo-Matanza river
From its source down to La Noria Bridge on Avenida General Paz, the river is usually referred to as
Río La Matanza,and from that point onwards as Riachuelo.
In its basin of 2,240 km2 (865 sq mi) live approximately 3.5 million people.
The south-easterly storm wind, known as Sudestada, hinders the waters of the Riachuelo from
reaching the Río de la Plata, producing frequent flooding in low-lying areas like La Boca and Barracas.
Since 1995 a number of flood management projects have been carried out to prevent such occurrences.
The watercourse receives large amounts of industrial waste from the numerous factories along the
reiverside, especially tanneries, which makes the Riachuelo a polluted river.
Among the most dangerous contaminants are heavy metals and waste water from the basin's
Its main tributaries are the Cañuelas, Chacón and Morales streams in the Province of Buenos Aires,
and the Cildánez stream (currently piped) in the Greater Buenos Aires urban area.
In 1993 President Menem's Secretary of Environment María Julia Alsogaray presented a 3 year project
to clean up the Riachuelo that was approved, but never started, let alone concluded.
The former civil servant, daughter of Álvaro Alsogaray,is being prosecuted for misappropriation
of those public funds.
According to Argentine newspaper Página/12, of the $250 million dollar budget, only $90 million remain.
$6 million were lost in punitive interests, $150 million were destined to unrelated social projects, and only
$1 million was used for the actual cleanup.
Critics have also noted that this cleanup was in vain, as all that was done was to remove sunken ship hulls,
but nothing was doneto prevent newly abandoned ships from sinking.
9. Yellow River - China
The Yellow River or Huang He / Hwang Ho (Chinese: 黃河; pinyin: Huáng Hé; Mongolian: Hatan Gol, Queen river) is the second-longest river in
China (after the Yangtze River) and the sixth-longest in the world at the estimated length of 5,464 kilometers (3,395 mi) Originating in the
Bayan Har Mountains in Qinghai Province in western China, it flows through nine provinces of China and empties into the Bohai Sea.
The Yellow River basin has an east-west extent of 1900 km (1,180 mi) and a north-south extent of 1100 km (684 mi). Total basin area is
742,443 km² (290,520 mi²).
The Yellow River is called "the cradle of Chinese civilization", as its basin is the birthplace of the northern Chinese civilizations and was the
most prosperous region in early Chinese history. But frequent devastating flooding largely due to the elevated river bed in its lower course,
has also earned it the unenviable name "China's Sorrow".
Early Chinese literature refers to the Yellow River simply as He (河), the word that has come to mean simply "river" in modern language
(in ancient times, however, 川 and 水 were used in the meaning "river"). The first appearance of the name "Yellow River" (黃河) is in the Book
of Han (Chinese: 漢書; pinyin: Hàn Shū) written in the Western Han dynasty (206 BC–AD 9). The name "Yellow River" describes the perennial
ochre-yellow colour of the muddy water in the lower course of the river. The yellow color comes from loess suspended in the water.
Sometimes the Yellow River is poetically called the "Muddy Flow" (simplified Chinese: 浊流; traditional Chinese: 濁流; pinyin: Zhuó Liú).
The Chinese idiom "when the Yellow River flows clear" is used to refer to an event that will never happen and is similar to the English
expression "when pigs fly".
In Qinghai, its Tibetan name is "river of the peacock" (Tibetan: རྨ་ཆུ་; Wylie: r Ma chu, p maqu 玛曲).
8. Pasig River - Philippines
The Pasig River (called Ilog Pasig in Filipino) is a river in the Philippines and connects Laguna de Bay to Manila Bay. It stretches for 25 kilometres (15.5 mi) and divides Metro Manila into two. Its major tributaries are the Marikina River and San Juan River.
The Pasig River is technically a tidal estuary in that the flow direction depends upon the water level difference between Manila Bay and Laguna de Bay. During the dry season, the water level in Laguna de Bay is low and the flow direction of the Pasig River depends on the tides. During the wet season, when the water level of Laguna de Bay is high, flow is normally from Laguna de Bay towards Manila Bay.
The Pasig River used to be an important transport route in Spanish Manila. However, due to negligence and industrial development, the river has become very polluted and is considered dead (unable to sustain life) by ecologists.
The Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC) was established to oversee rehabilitation efforts for the river. Supporting the PRRC are private sector organizations i.e. Clean and Green Foundation, Inc. who implemented the Piso para sa Pasig (Filipino: A peso for the Pasig) campaign.
7.Marilao river - Philippines
Marilao river got to the list of the dirtiest rivers after the Greenpeace inspection in 2007. Pollution mainly comes from tanneries, textiles and electronics recycling industries operating close the river. The locales don’t dare to catch and eat fish from Marilao as the waters contain toxic chemicals such as chromium, cadmium, copper and arsenic.
6. Buriganga River - Bangladesh
The Buriganga River (Bangla: বুড়িগঙ্গা Buŗigônga "Old Ganges") is the main river flowing beside Dhaka city, capital of Bangladesh. The average depth is 25 feet (7.6 m) and maximum depth is 58 feet (18 m).
The Buriganga is threatened by pollution and possession.
Unfortunately, the river is Dhaka's main outlet of sewage waste. Newspaper articles in 2004 indicated that up to 80% of Dhaka's sewage was untreated. A number of industries, including tanneries also discharge their chemical waste in to the river.
Waterflow in the Buriganga is low except during the monsoon season. During this flood period the river is "flushed" every year. It gets progressively worse until the next monsoons. Miraculously, when the water quality is not at its worst, River dolphins can still be seen. The Ganges River Dolphin is on IUCN's Red List of Threatened Species.
Land grabbing is a serious issue in Dhaka. The Buriganga is also a casualty. River land is reclaimed and built upon. This river bed loss of course means a narrower river bed which exacerbates flooding.
In an effort to reduce flooding, the river is often dredged. Ironically, this results in the branching rivers and canals drying up, which are subjected to further land grabbing.
Organisations like 'Buriganga Bachao Andolon' (Save Buriganga) have sprung up to address these issues.
5. Ganges river - India
More than 400 million people live along the Ganges River. An estimated 2,000,000 persons ritually bathe daily in the river, which is considered holy by Hindus. Being holy or not, but the river definitely not safe for people. It is filled with chemical wastes, sewage and even the remains of human and animal corpses which carry major health risks by either direct bathing in the dirty water or by drinking it.
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