A couple of weeks ago, a dam in Hungary broke and dangerous emissions from an aluminum smelting facility was flowing out. The toxic red sediment contains heavy metals like lead and is also lightly radioactive. It’s taken the lives of nine people and injuring one hundred and fifty, with forty five still in the hospital. Just inhaling dust from the toxic sediment can cause lung cancer. The emission also reached a river nearby and destroyed every living creature in it. This river also connects to Donau, which is the next longest river in Europe and involves countries like Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine. It is threatening its ecosystem, but they seem to have the situation under control.
The emissions has got to seven different villages and has forced over four hundred people to evacuate their homes. World Wild Fund for Nature(WWF) say that you can’t trust the industry anymore and that the security checks that is done one these depots of toxic waste is not good enough. And with 8 other facilities like this all across Europe, the security protocol should be investigated, to prevent this to happen again. The statistics also show that 34 factories like this has been shut down over the last thirty years. There is also two factories that are under special supervision because their depots is old and considered to not be good enough. That would worry me if I lived nearby. The environmental-director of EAA, Eirik Nordheim, says that it is most likely that all of these 34 factories have had emissions, maybe not as big as this, but still dangerous emissions. That should be a sign that this is a problem that should be under figured out and that the security checks should be of a better quality.
Rasmus Hansson of WWF-Norway, says that the factories is more worried about making money than the environment and that he thinks maintenance should be more important for the companies. The depots is a risk and over time, they will be insecure, at least if they’re not maintained in a good shape.
The work that has to be done after this tragedy is believed to cost more than thirty million dollars. The Hungarian government has taken over the control of the factory to have control over the work that has to be done to fix this and give people their homes back as fast as possible. The police has also gone through the companies office in Budapest since the government now has the control of the company.