Tuzla Chemical Industry’s Toxic Legacy

For years, chemical companies in the northern Bosnia city of Tuzla produced hazardous waste and never deposited them properly. These facilities have long been shut down, but waste, still capable of causing illness and death, remains in the old complexes, within reach of iron pickers.

The Federation entity’s ministry of environment and Tourism, does not have accurate and complete data about the types and amounts of hazardous waste. It has not identified all those “black spots” – the places polluted with toxic waste. Also, it has never done a plan for managing the waste that the entity government had been waiting for. Thus, the ministry cannot decide on the priorities when it comes to decontaminating dangerous landfills or budgeting the funds needed for this, reported CIN.

Exposure to toxic metals can cause life threatening health problems: lung, respiratory and skin cancers, allergies, cardiovascular and kidney diseases.

The Federation’s environmental protection strategy for 2008-2018, and the Plan for Waste Management for the period between 2012 and 2017, called for achieving several goals in hazardous waste management: building of dumps and landfills for hazardous waste; establishing a register of types and amounts of hazardous waste; setting up industrial incinerators; introducing fees to encourage firms to produce less waste, and rehabilitation of half of the sites where waste was deposited without regulations. This year will see the end of the implementation of goals — which remain goals only.

Read the full story here.

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