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Old 03-15-2011, 02:11 PM  
mohel
 
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Stewardship

The desert in Turkmenistan has a 328-foot-wide hole that has been on fire, continuously, for 38 years. The hole was caused by a drilling rig accident in 1971 that caused the ground to collapse and the rig to fall in. When poisonous fumes began leaking from the hole, the Soviets set it on fire to avoid a deadly catastrophe.

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It was during rule of Soviet Russia, back in 1971 when geologists were conducting gas drilling in Kara-Kum desert and discovered an underground chamber close to the village of Darvaza (known in Turkmen as Derweze, but sometimes also referred to as Darvaz). The discovery of the chamber was accidental and resulted in drilling rig collapsing, leaving giant gas crater filled with poisonous gases exposed to the world outside. The concentration of gases within the crater was high so nobody dared to go down there. It was then when someone came with an idea to light the gas in the crater on fire so as to burn it before the poisonous fumes engulf the nearby town of Darvaza.

The geologists thought the idea of burning the gas was smart and went ahead with lighting the crater on fire. As it turns out, the supply of quality natural gas below the crater is near infinite as the crater?s been burning since. At the time of this post, on June of 2009 the gas crater in Darvaza is still burning and has been since 1971 without interruption. No one can even imagine how much quality natural gas was burnt throughout the 38 years of the crater being on fire. No one can estimate how much more gas there still is. When they first lit the gas crater on fire, they thought the fire would go out after a few days. It?s been more than a few day, it?s been more than a few weeks or months. It?s been decades and the gas crater is burning just as it did the day it was first lit. Putting all economical loses from wasted natural gas aside, imagine the ecological impact this burning gas has cause during decades of non stop burning!
The Door to Hell
The locals from Darvaza have given the burning crater a name that suits it well ? The Door to Hell. And everyone who visits Darvaza agrees with the name and finds it appropriate. When you look inside the burning gas crater, you do feel like this is what the door to hell would look like. No one dared to enter the chamber when it was first discovered and no one has dared there since. After all, everyone knows what kind of path a door o hell takes you. And it?s not the path anyone would voluntarily want to embark on. Seeing the door to hell with your own eyes, however is an experience like no other. You will have long stayed in awe after experiencing the viciousness of the fire within the gorge of the burning crater. The Door to Hell would be an amazing vacation experience for the adventurous wonderers. This is a vacation idea that your mainstream tour operators don?t know about. And that?s the beauty of it.
Stewardship-f1.jpg 

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Old 03-15-2011, 02:55 PM  
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Sidoarjo Mud Volcano

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In May 2006, gas drilling on the island of Java in Indonesia resulted in a "mud volcano" killing 13 people. Since then, hot sulfuric mud has been gushing from the ground in Sidoarjo and is expected to expand and erupt for 30 more years.
[/QUOTE]

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Sidoarjo mud flow
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Sidoarjo mud flow or Lapindo mud, also informally abbreviated as Lusi, a contraction of Lumpur Sidoarjo (lumpur is the Indonesian word for mud), is a mud volcano[1] in the subdistrict of Porong, Sidoarjo in East Java, Indonesia that has been ongoing since May 2006. The biggest mud volcano in the world was created by the blowout of a natural gas well drilled by PT Lapindo Brantas, although company officials contend that it was caused by a distant earthquake.
At its peak Lusi was spewing up to 180,000 m? of mud per day[2], but it still averages approximately 30,000 m? (1 million cubic feet) of mud per day.[3] It is expected that the flow will continue for the next 25 to 30 years.[2][4] Although the Sidoarjo mud flow has been contained by levees since November 2008, resultant flooding regularly disrupts local highways and villages. Further breakouts of mud are still possible.[5]
Stewardship-mud_volcano_june08sm.jpg 

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Old 03-15-2011, 03:14 PM  
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Tennessee Coal Ash Spill

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A coal ash spill in eastern Tennessee that experts were already calling the largest environmental disaster of its kind in the United States is more than three times as large as initially estimated, according to an updated survey by the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Officials at the authority initially said that about 1.7 million cubic yards of wet coal ash had spilled when the earthen retaining wall of an ash pond at the Kingston Fossil Plant, about 40 miles west of Knoxville, gave way on Monday. But on Thursday they released the results of an aerial survey that showed the actual amount was 5.4 million cubic yards, or enough to flood more than 3,000 acres one foot deep.

The amount now said to have been spilled is larger than the amount the authority initially said was in the pond, 2.6 million cubic yards.

A test of river water near the spill showed elevated levels of lead and thallium, which can cause birth defects and nervous and reproductive system disorders, said John Moulton, a spokesman for the T.V.A., which owns the electrical generating plant, one of the authority?s largest.

Mr. Moulton said Friday that the levels exceeded safety limits for drinking water, but that both metals were filtered out by water treatment processes.

Mercury and arsenic, he said, were ?barely detectable? in the samples.

The ash pond was adjacent to the Emory River and near a residential area, where three houses were destroyed by the tide of muddy ash. Water sampled several miles downstream from the spill was safe to drink, but its iron and manganese content exceeded the secondary drinking water standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency, which govern taste and odor but not potential health effects, Mr. Moulton said.

Neither the authority nor the E.P.A. has released the results of tests of soil or the ash itself. Authority officials have said that the ash is not harmful, and the authority has not warned residents of potential dangers, though federal studies show that coal ash can contain dangerous levels of heavy metals and carcinogens.
HTML Code:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/27/us/27sludge.html
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Old 03-15-2011, 03:23 PM  
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Jilin

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A chemical plant exploded in Jilin City in China in November 2005, polluting the Songhua River with an estimated 100 tons of pollutants containing benzene and nitrobenzene entering the water. 10,000 residents were evacuated.
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Old 03-15-2011, 03:39 PM  
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Kentucky Coal Sludge Spill

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A gooey gray river of coal waste, the consistency of soft-serve ice cream, is oozing through waterways in Kentucky and West Virginia, inflicting what officials are calling the worst environmental disaster to hit the region in more than a decade.

So far, more than 100 miles of creeks, streams, and rivers have been affected, despite attempts by federal and state crews to contain the spreading mess. No human injuries have been reported, but the smothering sludge has been deadly to wildlife.

About 250 million gallons of the creeping goo, known as coal slurry, leaked from a Martin County Coal Corp. waste containment pond on Oct. 11 in Inez, Ky., about 140 miles east of Lexington, and has been inching through streams and rivers. The polluting glop meandered from the mine into creeks, then down the Big Sandy River and into the Ohio River last Friday.

?It?s a big mess, just as bad as if you had a big oil spill,? says Fred Stroud, on-scene coordinator with the Environmental Protection Agency?s emergency response team.

In the wake of the spill, the federal government announced a wide-ranging review of 653 coal-waste dams across the country. But officials are stumped about how to prevent the sludge from contaminating additional waterways in the Southeast.

Heavy Metals Found

Slurry is commonly found at coal mining sites across the nation. As coal is processed, certain minerals are removed to increase its burning potential. The waste is mixed with water, and the resulting slurry, a cement-like paste, is stored in ponds.

In this case, the coal company built the slurry pond above an old mine. When the bottom gave out, the sludge spilled through the mine and into the waterways.

Experts have found heavy metals in the sludge, including mercury, lead, arsenic, copper and chromium. While the long-term effects are unclear, the metals found don?t pose a threat in drinking water that is treated, according to the EPA and the Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet.
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Old 03-15-2011, 03:55 PM  
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Interesting stuff you found there, thanks .
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Old 03-15-2011, 04:00 PM  
mohel
 
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Baia Mare cyanide spill

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2000 Baia Mare cyanide spill was a leak of cyanide near Baia Mare, Romania into the Someş River by the gold mining company Aurul, a joint-venture of Australian company Esmeralda Exploration and the Romanian government.
The polluted waters eventually reached the Tisza and then the Danube, killing large quantities of fish in Hungary and Yugoslavia. The spill has been called the worst environmental disaster in Europe since the Chernobyl disaster.[1]

Background

Aurul, the mine operator, is a joint venture company formed by the Australian company Esmeralda Exploration and the Romanian government. The company claimed it has the ability to clean-up a by-product of gold mining, the toxic tailings, which began to be spread as toxic dust by the wind.[2] Promising to deal with them and to extract remaining gold from them via gold cyanidation, the company shipped its waste product to a dam near Bozinta Mare, Maramureş County.[2]
[edit]The dam failure

On the night of January 30, 2000, a dam holding contaminated waters burst and 100,000 cubic metres of cyanide-contaminated water (containing an estimated 100 tonnes of cyanides[3]) spilled over some farmland and then into the Someş river.[1][2]
Esmeralda Exploration blamed excessive snow fall for the dam failure.[1]
[edit]Effects

After the spill, the Someş had cyanide concentrations of over 700 times the permitted levels. The Someş flows into the Tisza, Hungary's second largest river, which then flows into Danube. The spill contaminated the drinking supplies of over 2.5 million Hungarians.[1] Apart from cyanide, also heavy metals were washed into the river and they have a long-lasting negative impact over the environment.[1]
The wildlife was particularly affected on the Tisza: on a stretch, virtually all life was killed and further south, in the Serbian section, 80% of the aquatic life was killed.[1]
Large quantities of fish died due to the toxicity of cyanide in the waters of the rivers, affecting 62 species of fish, of which 20 protected species. In Hungary, volunteers participated in removing the dead fish to prevent the disaster from spreading across the food chain, as other animals, such as foxes, otters and ospreys have been killed after eating contaminated fish.[1]
After the cyanide entered the Danube, the large volume of the river diluted the cyanide,[1] but it still remained in some sections as high as 20 to 50 times the allowed concentration.[4]
Two years after the spill, the ecosystem began to recover, but it still was far from its initial state, as the fishermen of Hungary claiming that their catches are only at a fifth of their original levels.[3]
[edit]Subsequent spills

Five weeks later, a spill of contaminated waters (this time with heavy metals) hit the region.[3] A dyke burst in Baia Borş, Maramureş County and 20,000 cubic metres of zinc, lead and copper-contaminated water made its way into the Tisza.[5]
A year later, another cyanide spill occurred in Romania, this time being a deliberate emptying of cyanide solutions into the Siret River.[3]
HTML Code:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2000_Baia_Mare_cyanide_spill
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Old 03-15-2011, 04:06 PM  
mohel
 
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Originally Posted by Jim_WV View Post
Interesting stuff you found there, thanks .
my pleasure, it's something I just stumbled on but seems appropriate given Japan's disaster.
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http://www.filtersfast.com/Worst-Man-Made-Environmental-Disasters.asp#mozTocId253290
We seem to be building momentum......
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Old 03-15-2011, 04:17 PM  
mohel
 
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Al Mishraq Fire

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In 2003, a fire in a sulphur plant near Mosul, Iraq released 21 thousand tons of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere each day for nearly a month. Many people were hospitalized and most of the area's vegetation was destroyed as a result.
it was the site of the largest man-made release of sulfur dioxide ever recorded
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Old 03-15-2011, 04:29 PM  
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Libby, Montana Asbestos Contamination

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A town left to die
Thursday, November 18, 1999

By ANDREW SCHNEIDER
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT

LIBBY, Mont. -- First, it killed some miners.

Then it killed wives and children, slipping into their homes on the dusty clothing of hard-working men.

Now the mine is closed, but in Libby, the killing goes on.

The W.R. Grace Co. knew, from the time it bought the Zonolite vermiculite mine in 1963, why the people in Libby were dying.

But for the 30 years it owned the mine, the company did not stop it.

Neither did the governments.

Not the town of Libby, not Lincoln County. Not the state of Montana, not federal mining, health and environmental agencies, not anyone else charged with protecting the public health.

Here is what is killing people in Libby:

Along with the enormous deposits of vermiculite in the earth of nearby Zonolite Mountain are millions of tons of tremolite, a rare and exceedingly toxic form of asbestos.

For eons, the tremolite lay undisturbed and harmless beneath a thin crust of topsoil. But mining the vermiculite has released the deadly asbestos fibers into the air.

A Post-Intelligencer investigation has shown that at least 192 people have died from the asbestos in the mine's vermiculite ore, and doctors say the toll could be much higher. The doctors and Libby's long-suffering families say that at least another 375 people have been diagnosed with fatal diseases caused by this silent and invisible killer.

Dr. Alan Whitehouse, a lung specialist from Spokane and an expert in industrial diseases, said another 12 to 15 people from Libby are being diagnosed with the diseases -- asbestosis, mesothelioma, lung cancer -- every month.

It takes anywhere from 10 to 40 years from the time a person is exposed to dangerous amounts of asbestos for the diseases to reveal themselves.

So in Libby, the killing goes on.

Grace defends its actions

The W.R. Grace Co. says it did no harm.

"Obviously we feel we met our obligation to our workers and to the community," said Jay Hughes, Grace's senior litigation counsel. Hughes said Grace spent "millions" to upgrade safety conditions and reduce dust at the mine.

But since 1984, 187 civil actions have been filed against Grace on behalf of Libby's miners and their families. There are 120 cases pending. In the others, Grace has either been found liable and been ordered to pay damages in a jury trial, or it settled out of court, often shortly before the trial was to begin. Scores of new suits are expected as more former workers, their families and other Libby residents are diagnosed with cancer and other asbestos-spawned diseases.

The district court in Libby is permitting only one civil action against Grace every three months.

The diseases do their work slowly, but not that slowly. Long before they get their day in court, many more victims will die.
HTML Code:
http://www.seattlepi.com/uncivilaction/lib18.shtml
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W. R. Grace Plant in Libby, Montana spewed tremolite asbestos over the town for decades killing over 200 people and sickening over 1,000. The company knowingly released asbestos and tried to hide its dangers from residents and is now bankrupt after facing 270,000 asbestos-related lawsuits. Residents have been facing the effects of this disaster since 1999.
Stewardship-lm.jpg 


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