By Li Qian | 2013-1-11 | NEWSPAPER EDITION
A SUPPLIER of precision components for some of the largest electronic companies continued to release gases with a strong chemical smell near a residential area after the local officials told the company to clean things up.
More than 700 households in a residential complex in Chang'an Town in Dongguan City had to keep their windows closed because of the strong odor from Janus Precision Components Co Ltd, on the other side of the street, Yangcheng Evening News reported yesterday.
Reporters from the newspaper who visited the neighborhood recently said that the odor seemed to have decreased.
Local environmental officials called the gas "pollution" but did not identify it or release information on its toxicity. The company has not commented.
The city is in the heavily industrial "world's workshop" in Guangdong Province. Janus' main customers include well-known electronics manufacturers Samsung, Huawei, ZTE, Haier, Sharp and Lenovo, the company's website says.
Some local women decided to change their plans of starting a family last year because of health concerns regarding the emissions, said the newspaper.
Residents told the newspaper they started complaining to Chang'an Environmental Protection Bureau in May, but they think the bureau tried to cover up the pollution because the company provided tax income for the local government.
"I said I planned to get pregnant, but I was just told to 'move to another place,' " a local resident told the newspaper.
The bureau denied it ignored the issue. Officials said they ordered the company to make rectification as soon as they received the complaints, but said the company didn't follow the order.
The local environmental officials then began an investigation in November, the newspaper reported. Their initial investigation found that the company had expanded and built two automatic spraying lines for components without getting environmental approval.
The company that runs the factory has used multiple names, which made the case very complicated, according to local environmental protection officials.
It was called Dongguan Xieke Plastic Cement Production Co Ltd in 2004, but that name was not used as of 2010, when it merged into Janus. Last July, Janus registered its subsidiary, Dongguan Huasheng Electronics Technology Co Ltd, and put the production in Chang'an Town under the new branch.
It was hard to identify the one to take the blame, officials claimed.