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New Water Pollution Dangers in Hungary, South Africa

06 Oct

A torrential wave of toxic red sludge uprooted hundreds of Hungarian citizens as a reservoir of polluted material from a nearby aluminum plant broke open.

Leftovers of the process by which the plant converts bauxite into aluminum, the sludge is caustic and may possess low levels of radioactivity.  Over 100 people have been sent to the hospital for burns, and 4 have already died from the accident.

The sludge has already killed marine life in nearby rivers, and it is now being carried down to the Raba River which empties into the Danube.  These high pollutant concentrations may cause a veritable ecological disaster.  Hungarian workers are attempting to contain the sludge before it reaches the Danube.  Read more…

The South African government has also warned that high pollution levels could make 80% of the nation’s fresh water resources undrinkable within the next five years.

Pollution from industrial processes, sewage and drainage from mining operations have jeopardized South Africa’s water resources.  The Environment and Conservation Association has embarked on a major water monitoring project to identify the extent of the resource pollution.

The Association emphasized the impact of water quality upon economic activity in the region. “Almost 56% of the products we consume rely directly on the supply of clean healthy water, and if this water is not available, those products cannot be produced.  Water affects every single part of our daily lives and without it we cannot survive.  We cannot eat and we will be left in a country made barren by pollution.”  Read more…

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Posted by on October 6, 2010 in Water

 

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