Much river silt does contain pollutants, but this depends on the amount and type of human activity on the banks of the river. The Yangtze River in China has become so polluted and silt-thick in recent years that plant and animal life on its banks has been greatly affected. The Yellow River, because of the same issues, at times does not even reach the ocean due to the thick silt. Estuaries in Tijuana are also blocked by garbage and silt. Rivers carry silt and pollutants downstream, but deposits grow more dense over time because the silt settles somewhat to the bottom.
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