Environmental disasters

Balikpapan declares emergency after damaging oil spill, Borneo

Indonesian port city of Balikpapan, on the island of Borneo, declared a state of emergency after pipeline fracture caused devastating oil spill along the coast, killing five fishermen and bringing health problems to hundreds of locals after it ignited. The oil spill, which occurred over the weekend (March 31 – April 1), has now covered an area of around 18 km2 ...

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Over a million liters (264 000 gallons) of toxic cyanide leaked into Potrerillos River, Argentina

Over a million liters (264 172 gallons) of toxic cyanide solution has leaked from Barrick Gold’s Veladero mine in western San Juan province, Argentina, newest estimation shows. Despite this being about five times higher amount than previously thought, federal judge lifted a ban prohibiting further cyanide solution pumping, on September 24, 2015. The incident happened on September 12, 2015, and ...

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Toxic foams and fire bursting out of Bellandur lake, India

Bellandur Lake, the largest lake in the city of Bangalore, India, is extremely polluted by a high amount of ammonia and phosphate while a very low amount of dissolved oxygen and refuse waters from across the city make the situation even worse.  To an observer, the 36 km (22 miles) wide lake visually appears as if the snow is covering a ...

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Mudslide devastates the village of Bento Rodrigues, Brazil

A mining waste dam in the city of Mariana, Minas Gerais state, Brazil collapsed on the afternoon of November 5, 2015 (local time) unleashing a surge of mud that devastated the nearby village of Bento Rodrigues, population about 600. At this time, it is unknown how many people lost their lives, however, 17 are feared dead and dozens missing.  Residents said no alarms sounded to warn ...

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Toxic mining waste spill in Brazil reaches the Atlantic Ocean in an unprecedented environmental disaster

​A flow of toxic mining waste which spilled into a main river in the city of Mariana, Minas Gerais state, Brazil on November 5, 2015, devastated the village of Bento Rodrigues and affected thousands of hectares of land and water has now reached the Atlantic Ocean, according to Brazil’s environmental agency, Ibama.  The toxic flow has traveled at least 500 km (310 miles) through ...

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Radioactive spill at the nuclear plant site in New York, US

The Indian Point nuclear plant in New York reported a radioactive spill that began on February 5, 2016. Since then, groundwater tests conducted directly at the plant site showed a 65 000% increase in radioactivity, media reported. The water leak happened when a drain overflowed as the workers were transferring highly radioactive water during a maintenance exercise. Under normal circumstances, a ...

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Alison Canyon massive gas leak finally sealed, California

The natural gas leak in Porter Ranch, California, was officially declared sealed on February 18, 2016. Four months passed since the pipeline rupture spewed massive amounts of methane and displaced thousands of Los Angeles residents from their homes. Tests performed on February 17 confirmed the ruptured well, sealed with cement, is permanently sealed: “Gas emissions are controlled and air quality ...

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Tons of dead fish washed ashore in central Vietnam

Tons of various species of dead fish washed ashore along the central coast of Vietnam over the last couple of days. The fish bodies show signs of poisoning and an investigation is being carried out to investigate the issue. The local authorities claim such an environmental disaster is unprecedented. A massive amount of dead marine life has been found along ...

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