Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Search on for fire's toxic legacy


ENVIRONMENTAL-watch agencies have urged the Pollution Control Department (PCD) to look for contamination by dioxin-furans and other toxic substances in the soil and underground water near the dump-fire site in Samut Prakan's tambon Praksa.
Dioxins and furans are among the most toxic chemicals known to science and can cause cancer in humans.
The agencies have also asked the Industrial Works Department to investigate illegal dumping and contamination of industrial waste in other garbage dumps in the province.
Apha Wangkiat, an environmental lecturer of Rangsit University's engineering faculty, said after the huge fire broke out at the illegal garbage dump in Praksa on March 16, no pollution control agencies turned out to examine the level of dioxin-furans.
Dioxin-furans can taint the environment for more than 100 years and contaminate the food cycle.
Monitoring only carbon-dioxide, carbon-monoxide and sulfur-dioxide is not enough to prove the environment surrounding the dump fire is free from the contamination of toxic substances.
"We found the PCD had no capacity to examine for contamination of dioxin-furans in the environment near the garbage dump as it needed a lot of money [to pay] for testing in the laboratory," she said.
The toxic substances come from the combustion of plastic syringes, plastic tubes, and polyvinyl chloride known as PVC, which have been used in industrial factories.
Apha asked agencies to come forward with cleanup measures for the illegal garbage dump once the fire was out.
READ MORE: http://www.nationmultimedia.com/national/Search-on-for-fires-toxic-legacy-30229999.html

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