U.S. NGO to put Cuddalore pollution problem in global limelight

24 October 2007
A.V. Ragunathan
The Hindu,

CUDDALORE: The Louisiana Bucket Brigade, an environmentalists’ group in the U.S., has expressed solidarity with the SIPCOT Area Community Environment Monitoring Committee and the environmentalists in Cuddalore in their combat against pollution.


Voicing concern over the pollution level in the SIPCOT Industrial Estate, the Brigade has proposed to host the Cuddalore problem on its website www.labucketbrigade.org to take the message to the international audience.


The Brigade will support the endeavour to check pollution and talk to the industries to keep their emission and effluent levels well within the norms, according to Melanie Lawrence and Holly Witherington, Community Organisers, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, New Orleans, U.S.


Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, they said that during their two-day stay in Eachankadu, Samiyarpettai and Reddiarpettai, abutting the SIPCOT Industrial Estate here, the effects of pollution made them fell sick. It was in such hazardous conditions the people were living in scores of villages surrounding the industrial estate, even while grappling with the devastations wrought by the tsunami.


She cautioned against locating pollution-causing industries, including oil refineries (one is slated to come up in Cuddalore), in coastal areas, when there was apprehension over the global warming triggering more of disasters.


Citing the post-Katrina scenario, she said a refinery in New Orleans spilled several million litres of oil, causing chaos and making the place unfit for living. This had happened despite the enactment of a plethora of laws and regulations.


About nuclear power, Ms. Lawrence said the movement against nuclear power stations in the U.S. was quite strong.


The Brigade was of the firm view that it was difficult to get rid of the nuclear waste.

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U.S. NGO to put Cuddalore pollution problem in global limelight
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