World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Toxic Contamination In Floods Threatens Population

Toxic Contamination In Floods Threatens Population

Amsterdam/Prague, 15 August 2002 ¯Greenpeace today confirmed flooding at two dioxin-contaminated buildings at the Spolana chemical factory outside Prague. Ninety per cent of the company sites are under water and the mercury-contaminated area has been flooded since yesterday.

The impact from flooding at the chemical factory escalated this afternoon when a chlorine cloud forced residents to seek safety indoors. The Greenpeace team had earlier observed smoke coming out of the factory site. During the night a small explosion occurred inside the factory.

Greenpeace has protested the company’s reluctance to clean up its dangerous wastes and repeatedly warned about the contamination in Elbe River’s flood plain and the possibility of a disaster if flooding occurred. (1)

The chemical factory Spolana Neratovice is situated approximately 25 kilometres north of Prague on the river Elbe. Spolana produces polyvinylchloride (PVC) and other basic chemicals and pharmaceutical products. The two dioxin-contaminated buildings were former production facilities of the herbicide 2,4,5-T, more commonly known as Agent Orange. The company halted its 2,4,5-T production on account of the severe health effects on workers in 1968. Extremely high dioxin concentrations were indicated within in the surroundings of the contaminated buildings.

Spolana allowed the heavily dioxin-contaminated buildings to remain within the Elbe flood zone despite environmental concerns for potential flooding. The company put a flood barrier around one of the more endangered buildings only after pressure from Greenpeace The current flooding threatens to poison the river not only with dioxins and the mercury from vinyl chloride production, but also with other toxic substances such as DDT, endrin, diendrin, lindane, benzene and heptachlor.

“Spolana should be made accountable for the damages caused by this accident. They have known for years about the risks connected with contamination on their site,” said Martin Hojsik, Greenpeace Toxics Campaigner for Greenpeace Central Europe. “Despite knowing about the dangers, the company has not taken specific measures to clean up and prevent what we now see today.”

Notes to the editor:

(1) At the Johannesburg World Summit on Sustainable Development, August 26th to September 4th, Greenpeace is calling on world governments to commit to the development of a global framework on corporate responsibility, which should include corporate liability.

For more information on Spolana, Greenpeace report on corporate crimes: http://www.greenpeace.org/~toxics/documents/spolana.pdf


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>

ALSO:

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news