The floods brought about by tropical storm Esau in some coastal areas in Japan has made headlines for the past days, but a flooded subway in the city of Hamamatsu gained particular attention after Chinese netizens took notice of the clear floodwaters that filled its walkways. The photos went viral on social media; with Chinese locals comparing the floodwaters to that of swimming pools.
Following a recently conducted testing on three public swimming pools in Beijing, one user commented that “even our swimming pools aren’t this clean” as results of the study conclude that the swimming pools contain excessive urine.
Some even went further as to say that “In China, [the water] would be like black sesame soup.”
Similar reactions were garnered from other nationalities as one Filipino online user commented, “How we envy you, Japan! Here in the Philippines, you can die from wading in flood water. Too much microorganisms.”
Doubting the unbelievably clear flood waters, some online users claim that the photos “must be Photoshopped” and “not scientific”. A Chinese netizen explained that “Islands [in Japan] have less mud, so of course they’re cleaner than somewhere with many mountains and rivers. You can’t compare such a different geographical environment to China.”
Counteracting the above-mentioned argument, another online user argued that “Japan also has crops and trees. According to your logic, they must plant them in sand.”
Renowned for its cleanliness, Japan was ranked 20th among the cleanest countries in the world by Forbes in 2010. Although many factors —natural or not— may have contributed to the clarity of Japan’s flood waters, their discipline is likely to have made a difference.