Paraxylene (PX) | South China Morning Post
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  • Jan 30, 2015
  • Updated: 8:58am

Paraxylene (PX)

Paraxylene (PX) is a chemical essential to the process of manufacturing plastic bottles and polyester clothing which is dangerous if inhaled or if absorbed through skin, causing different degrees of damage to abdominal organs and the nervous system. China is the world’s largest PX producer and consumer as of 2010. Safety concerns over PX factories have prompted environmental protests in China.     

Science students embroiled in plant safety debate

Protests against paraxylene plants have grown. Photo: Reuters

Authorities play dangerous game by having people still studying at university act as experts.

Saturday, 12 April, 2014, 4:58am

People in Maoming and Shenzhen stage fresh protests over planned PX plant

A police van burns in Maoming on Sunday. Photo: Reuters

Several hundred people in Maoming in southern Guangdong staged another rally yesterday against a proposed chemical plant, with the public still apparently deeply distrustful of assurances from officials that no decisions have been made on whether to push ahead with the scheme.

5 Apr 2014 - 5:33am 2 comments

Violence, arrests in Guangdong city of Maoming as locals rally against petrochemical plant

Photo of the protest in Maoming shared online on Sunday. Screenshot via Sina Weibo.

A Sunday rally against a petrochemical plant in the southern Chinese Province of Guangdong was instigated by “a group of outlaws,” the Maoming city government said, reacting to a rare show of public discontent in a city plagued by corruption scandals.

31 Mar 2014 - 5:05pm 3 comments

Fears over expanded paraxylene projects as Beijing decentralises approval process

A demonstrator holds up a sign depicting Dalian's rejection of PX, or paraxylene, the toxic chemical made at a plant 20 kilometres upwind from the city. Photo: AP

Expanding plants making the dangerous chemical paraxylene (PX) will no longer need ministerial approval - a move to cut red tape that could upset environmentalists and other opponents of the controversial facilities.

13 Dec 2013 - 3:35am 1 comment

Zhangzhou chemical plant blast highlights safety fears

The fire was put out quickly, but wreaked havoc inside. Photo: SCMP

A paraxylene (PX) plant exploded in Fujian province yesterday - just as the Communist Party's main mouthpiece was publishing an article highlighting the industry's safety record.

31 Jul 2013 - 9:55am 1 comment

Kunming residents rally against chemical plant

Residents wearing masks hold posters with slogans including 'PX get out of Kunming' as they protest against a planned refinery. Photo: Reuters

Hundreds protested in Kunming, Yunnan province, but a march in Chengdu, Sichuan province, was prevented by police. The rallies were timed to coincide with the anniversary of the May 4 student demonstrations in Beijing in 1919.

5 May 2013 - 5:24am

Far Eastern looks west for growth

Far Eastern's Douglas Hsu sees growth in shale gas. Photo: Bloomberg

Taiwanese conglomerate Far Eastern Group is eyeing the development of petrochemical plants in the United States, fuelled by cheap energy as the US exploits its shale gas reserves, company's chairman and chief executive Douglas Tong Hsu says.

18 Apr 2013 - 5:33am

Protests over industrial projects a challenge for China

Police and protesters clash in Qidong, Jiangsu, in July over plans for a waste-water pipeline from a paper factory. Photo: AFP

Mainlanders are increasingly taking to the streets in protest over industrial development, a phenomenon analysts say is a serious challenge for local officials. In the latest case, big demonstrations in the Zhejiang city of Ningbo successfully halted a plan to expand a Sinopec petrochemical complex.

31 Oct 2012 - 12:14pm

Fifty detained in China pollution protests

Police look out from the city government offices in Ningbo, in eastern China's Zhejiang province, on Monday after thousands of locals clashed with police during a protest at the construction of a chemical plant. Photo: AFP

China’s eastern city of Ningbo detained more than 50 people over violent protests last week that successfully blocked a planned chemical plant, state media said on Tuesday.

30 Oct 2012 - 8:54pm

Ningbo residents doubt pledge to halt chemical plant expansion

Residents gather outside the Ningbo city government offices yesterday. Officials say the 55.8-billion-yuan expansion has been suspended pending "scientific debate". Photo: AFP

Ningbo residents reacted warily yesterday to the city government's decision to halt the expansion of a Sinopec petrochemical complex, with hundreds of people continuing to protest.

Experts said the stand-off highlighted deepening distrust of government on the mainland.

30 Oct 2012 - 2:25pm