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Industry causing Environmental Disasters in India and China – Chlorine Gas Leaks in Mumbai leads to 3 deaths and more than 60 falling ill

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India and China are seeing rapid economic and industrial growth in excess of 8% GDP growth.While rapid growth is necessary to pull up the estimated 2.5 billion people in these 2 countries to a middle class life,it has also resulted in environmental degradation.The industries in these 2 countries are poorly regulated unlike the West and have very low safety standards.Besides poor labor conditions,the companies in these countries routinely cut corners on safety costs.This frequently leads to air and water pollution hazards.With the media and citizens growing increasingly assertive, its no longer possible to push these disasters under the carpet.The Bhopal Gas Disaster was the biggest industry caused human environmental disaster.However the guilty managed to escape and the guilty company Union Carbide paid a paltry amount as compensation.

China routinely seeing Industry caused Water and Air Pollution Disasters

However the policymakers and industrialists in these countries have failed to implement more stringent safety standards.In China, a copper smelter polluted the adjacent water body by releasing toxic water which led to the death of countless fish  and danger to the neighboring human settlements as well.China has frequently seen water and air get polluted by industries flourishing in flagrant disregard of safety rules.Recently a Nuclear Accident in a Chinese province near Hong Kong was hushed up.

Zijin Shares Drop After Closing Plant on Waste Leaks – BusinessWeek

Waste water containing acidic copper seeped into the Ting River in Fujian province on July 3, the company said in a filing to the Hong Kong exchange yesterday. Heavy rainfall led to the leakage, according to initial investigations, Zijin said.The company has carried out emergency measures to address the leakage, it said. The effect on drinking water is “limited” and the water supply normalized a few days after the incident, Zhao said from Shanghang city.

The government has issued new environmental standards for commodity producers including steelmakers and lead plants in the past year, threatening closures if they weren’t met. Thousands of children were poisoned by lead, zinc and manganese plants in Yunnan, Henan, Shaanxi and Hunan provinces last year.The Shanghang county government mobilized soldiers, civil servants and villagers to help net the dead fish, Xinhua said yesterday. Calls to the Shanhang county government communications office were not answered.

Environmental authorities ordered the closure of the Five Dragon Gold Mine in Dandong city, Liaoning province, owned by Zhongjin Gold Corp. in July 2008, after tailings polluted the drinking water of 210,000 people in a nearby city, Xinhua News Agency said then.In 2005, the nation’s environmental protection chief resigned after an explosion at a PetroChina Co. plant spilled toxic chemicals into the Songhua River, poisoning the drinking water of 3 million people.

India also catching up to China

India has also started catching up to China with growing industrialization.Chlorine Gas Leakage from cylinders lying in an unused contained yard in the Mumbai Port has led to deaths and sickness.It was a totally avoidable disaster which reflects the callousness of the port authorities.It is a clear case of criminal negligence to allow dangerous chemicals and gases to lie in Port Areas.As is the usual pattern,don’t expect and prosecution or punishment of guilty officials .

Gas leak at Mumbai Port Trust kills 3, over 50 hospitalised – Times Now

At least 3 people have died of a chlorine leak at the Mumbai Port Trust on Wednesday (July 14). At least 57 workers had to be rushed to hospital following the leak from a faulty gas cylinder, and two hours on 3 had succumbed to the effects of the deadly gas emanating from it.

The cylinder is reportedly one of dozens lying in an unused container yard in the Port premises. Authorities have been trying to seal of the area with the help of Port Trust officials, who may be aware of the nature of the chemicals stored in this yard – some of which have been reportedly lying unused for years.


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

One Response so far | Have Your Say!

  1. sweety

    want some more reasons