The Biggest Russian Freshwater Lake Is Dieing From Polution
(Irkutsk Region In Russia)
What Will Happen To Wildlife And Biodiversity Here?
Lake Baikal is one of the greatest lakes in the world. Baikal is the largest freshwater lake in Russia, it contains 23,600 cubic kilometers of water, which is about 20% of the world fresh water. Much more than in any other lake on our planet.
Based on the assumption that an average person consumes 500 liters of water per day, Baikal can provide the whole Earth with drinkable water for about 40 years!
Also, this ancient lake is the home of 848 endemic animals, including famous Baikal seal, and 133 endemic plants.
Now this amazing lake is dying and its killer is the BPPP, or Baikal Pulp and Paper Plant.
Several years ago BPPP was forced to shut down its pulp production, due to numerous complaints about water pollution in Baikal because of pulp waste. But a new government decision excludes pulp production from the list of activities forbidden in the Central Baikal Ecological Zone.
So, the BPPP will be producing bleached pulp at open water cycle conditions and therefore it will be polluting Baikal once again. According to A.Zimenko, BPPP activity changed composition of more than 70% of water in Baikal.
Waste water, produced by the pulp plant, contains chlorine, dioxins (the most harmful toxins known to mankind), lignins, sulfates, chlorides, etc.
Besides, ecologists deny BPPP statements about modern multilevel purification system. BPPP management officials and executives state that their water treatment section is so very environmentally safe, that even lotuses are grown there.
But, is this is so true, why do they somehow refuse to drink water from Baikal?
M. Rikhvanova found further confirmation of the water contamination in muddy yellow water with strong chemical smell collected in the BPPP waste waters. According to E.Schwarz, plant equipment is worn-out by 70-90% and plant owners need more than 500,000,000 € to replace the old equipment.
Ecologists believe that plant owners won’t spend such amount of money on environment safety and the Baikal Pulp and Paper Plant will be polluting Baikal even after 2012, slowly killing its unique flora and fauna.
Is anyone else outraged by this? What should be done?