Miscelleneous : POVERTY & ENVIRONMENT

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Effluence and Pollution (Developed countries)

Only 20% population of the developed countries enjoy 80% of the world resource and pollute the environment to maintain better living condition.

Poverty and Pollution (Developing countries / Under developed countries)

Developing / under developed countries pollute their environment (i) for survival (ii) poor management (iii) laws are not implemented (iv) to meet the demand of developed countries.

Many developed countries take the advantage of poor socio-economic condition of developing / underdeveloped countries and directly or indirectly make the environment of developing countries more polluted.

1) Battery waste containing lead from some countries are coming to developing / under developed countries for recycling. Final lead goes back to developed countries but pollutant remains in developing countries. This is one example out of many as direct way to pollute environment of developing / underdeveloped countries.

2) Smelting operation has been reduced to greater extent in western countries but lead and similar metals are imported from developed countries as a result thousands of factories are growing like mushrooms in developing countries pollute the rural environment.

3) Industrial waste are deposited by developed countries to some developing countries.

Environmental problems and reason behind

(A) Over exploitation of natural resource

It is stated, "an estimated 62 million people in India in 17 out of 32 states (including Union Territories) are affected with dental, skeletal / or non-skeletal fluorosis". [Susheela,A.K. Current Science 77(1999) 1250-1256].

During 1998, hundreds of patients suffering fluorosis was first discovered from Assam [Chakraborti et al., Current Science,78(12),1421-1423, 2000] (Photograph-1)

 

Photograph-1: Fluorosis in Assam

More than 300,000 people in West Bengal alone suffering from arsenical skin lesions. 5 million people in West Bengal are drinking arsenic contaminated water above WHO guideline value 10 µg/l and about 40 million people are at risk. [Chakraborti et al., Environmental Health Perspective, 108:393-397, 2000]. Photograph-2

 

Photograph-2: Arsenicosis in Calcutta

In Rajnandagaon of Madhya Pradesh arsenic underground water and people suffering from arsenicosis was reported in February 1999 [Chakraborti et al., Current Science, 77(4),502-504,1999] (Photograph-3).

About 40% of shallow tubewells analysed from arsenic affected 9 districts of West Bengal and contain arsenic above WHO guide line value (10 µg/l). It is a common belief that deep tubewells above 100m are not arsenic contaminated. However it is not true. During last one year we tested 245 hand tubewells of PHED, Government of West Bengal from Deganga block of North 24-Pargnas above 100 meters from where people are drinking water and 28% have arsenic above 10 µg/l the WHO guideline value and 12% above 50
µg/l WHO maximum permissible limit. In October and November 2000 arsenic was found in some deep tubewells in hospitals, Zoo, National library and southern part of Calcutta.

 

Photograph-3: Arsenic patient

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