In Hungary, anxiety is focused on another red sludge reservoir on the banks of the Danube at Almasfuzito, 50 miles north of Budapest. The waste here is similarly produced by turning bauxite into aluminium. Seven pools hold 12m tonnes of hazardous waste, including an estimated 120,000 tonnes of heavy metals.
Well, it depends on what you mean by \”heavy metals\” really. Iron is, arguably, a heavy metal, and there\’s something like 4 million tonnes of that in there.
But more importantly, whatever you are calling \”heavy metals\”, the point isn\’t how many tonnes there are there. It\’s what is the concentration? 1% heavy metals might sound like a high concentration but compared to what? What\’s the \”heavy metal\” content of normal soil? Depending upon how you define it, that concentration will be either more or less than the concentration claimed for this red mud.
There is a real problem with this stuff, which is that it is highly caustic….plus the fact that there\’s 12 million tonnes of this slurry. But the heavy metals content really isn\’t part of the problem.
Oh, and as to the idea that it\’s capitalism that rapes Gaia:
Many of the threats to the river\’s health are part of the legacy of communism.
you really only have to wander around the former USSR to learn that socialism was/is far more destructive of the environment than capitalism ever was. If you turn back to the writings of people like GB Shaw, you find a total disregard of the environment. One of the chilling things about the utopia he describes in Back to Methuselah is that there are no more animals, cou8ntryside…..