BYD under fire amid reports of factory pollution causing nosebleeds in children
Chinese automaker BYD or Build Your Dreams, that is backed by Warren Buffett, has come under scrutiny amid reports that pollution from one of its factories is causing nose bleeding amid children of the nearby residents. Authorities in Changsha, the capital of central China’s Hunan province, sent a team to BYD’s factory to investigate the gas emissions from its factory after receiving complaints from neighbors, the local government said in a statement on its official Weibo account.
The team sent by the government includes third-party testing institutions and experts who will get to the bottom of the matter that has led to hundreds of parents in Changsha protest. As per a report, more than 600 children living near the production plant in the city’s Yuhua district have experienced repeated nosebleeds since April.
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Defending its case, the Shenzhen-based BYD said that its emissions comply with regulations and noted it has taken steps to reduce the odor caused by the plant, which has been in operation since 2012. Further, the company has filed police reports alleging that the complaints about nosebleeds are groundless and malicious.
BYD is one of China’s most successful car companies in terms of sales. It produces both conventional combustion engine automobiles as well as electric vehicles. It also makes batteries for EVs. Following the reports of protests by residents, the company's China-traded shares dropped on Monday, falling as much as 4.6%, its biggest intraday decline in almost two weeks.
In a separate development last month, the company had announced that it has stopped making fully internal combustion engine vehicles and now produces only pure electric vehicles and heavily electrified plug-in hybrid models. The auto company claims that this move comes as part of the brand's electrification strategy.