Poverty and Pollution Case Study
Recently, the question of pollution has become the most discussed one on the meetings in different institutions. The proof of this tendency is a big number of governmental and non-governmental projects developed in order to improve the state of the environment. In addition, there appears to be a close connection between poverty and the level of pollution in the region. The level of natural resources is decreasing every day. Economically powerful countries are eager to control deposits of gas and oil as the majority of enterprises are using gas. The monopoly approach in this question is also the reason of wars and conflicts. One good example is Caucasus region, which includes Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and a part of Turkey. In the region, one can feel the influence of Russia. The only country that has gas is Azerbaijan. Armenia in this case is considered to be a victim. According to historical issues and the beginning of the 20th century, modern territory of Azerbaijan was within Armenia. Stalin signed the document, which stated that the territory from East of Armenia to the Caspian Sea belongs to Azeri. This causes a tense situation in the region.
The world today is divided into countries of Benelux, partners of Great 7 and Great 8, and the third world. Huge business corporations are developing optimization plans in order to save money. According to these plans, production is often moved to third world countries, while the head office continues to search for opportunities with big amount of resources and cheep work force. Interesting, but the countries of the former Soviet Union also belong to the category of third world countries, although geographically they are considered to be European countries. Nevertheless, the image about third world countries created in people’s minds is often associated with India, China, Brazil, and majority of African countries. Overcrowded countries are the poorest and polluted because of economic reasons.
Economic development caused environmental instability. It is also possible to say that it caused the crisis. The highlighted question related to a negative influence of the relocation of the business to third world countries is extremely important as it results in the pollution of air and water resources and large-scale deforestation. Moreover, rare species of animals disappear and with them disappears the pureness of the country. In Brazil, there is a region, which is called “valley of death” (Shaw, 2011). The population of the valley is about 2.000.000 people. In the region, mostly plants are located. The state of environment is close to a disaster. The air is full of toxins. All of them are carcinogens. As a result, health of people living in the area becomes worse. The level of life-important white blood cells becomes so low, that it increases chances to develop leukemia. Adults and children are sick and weak all the time. Those who are willing to move from the region cannot afford to do this. They are caged in the obstacles of economic dependence.
Jack M. Hollander in his book mentions that poor should maintain their “traditional way of life” (Hollander, 2004). In this case, the business has the power to control the level of income. There is a saying "do not pay people what they worth, pay what they are asking". The promotion of standards of life pushes people to look for chances to earn. Often they do not look at the conditions and sacrifice their health. This is a very common practice for third world countries.
Poor people are paying huge price for an opportunity to earn little money because of the circumstances they are in. Consequences of such decisions are horrible. On the 3rd of December 1984, one of the biggest industrial disasters in the middle of India took place. Methyl isocyanate was released to the environment in Bhopal, India causing many serious effects. Initially, the accident occurred because of poor storage of methyl isocyanate water tanks. 500, 000 people living in the area were exposed to the toxic gas. Again, the situation became worse due to overcrowding of the slum area and poor infrastructure. Manufacturing industry in the nearby area, which produced chemicals also contributed to a situation. Toxicological disaster caused the spread of fate and pollutants in the environment. In the aftermath of toxicological disaster, groups of determinant illnesses play a role in biological effect. Increased heart rate and blood pressure were the symptoms among the exposed population. Moreover, symptoms of exposure to radiation like headache and fatigue were reported at high levels by people in contaminated areas. Human health was seriously affected by the tragedy whereby an estimate of 520,000 people happened to be admitted in wards, and among them were children and pregnant women (Gupta, 2006). Doctors were unfamiliar with the type of medication to offer and were not prepared for the huge number of patients.
Many incidents of health problems occurred where people seriously damaged their health. Increased mortality due to cardiovascular and respiratory diseases occurred. Consequences of psychosocial incident happened due to chemicals and issues like diabetes. Gastrointestinal cancer contributed to an increased mortality rate. It was a challenge to determine the consequences because of various limitations such as lack of individual data and short latency period. Early health investigations, including liver functioning, immune health effects, and neurologic impairment, provided inconclusive results.
There was a failure of proper management of the plant, which led to a release of gas. Another reason was poor safety system, which was also switched off to save money. Location of the plant around the densely populated area worsened the situation. A high death rate was recorded ranging from 2259 to 8000 in a fortnight (Varma, 2009). The incident caused both temporary and permanent injuries to people. Due to high congestion in the health care system as an aftermath of the incident, the government was faced with the obligation to build more hospitals and mobile units in the area affected by gas. A population of around 520 000, inclusive of both children and pregnant mothers was affected (Patty, 2009).
The incident also lead to the obligation of Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre (BMHRC) in 1998 to provide free care to all those who survived the 8 year period since the leakage. Other centers were also established to offer free medical care to the victims of leakage, who survived to 2006. The number of mini-units was eight. A charitable Sambhavna trust was registered in 1995 because of the strikes and disputes emerging regarding the question of quality of the free medical care. Modern medications for the victims were discharged in this trust at no charge.
This is a great example of how lack of communication between operators and supervisory personnel can cause the tragedy. However, despite these factors, there were huge technical issues. So, tank alarm, manual back-up system, vent gas scrubbers, flare tower, steam boiler, refrigeration system, and water pressure were not working appropriate.
The country becomes developed by incorporation of plants and enterprises on its territory. In this way, it has a chance to raise the level of wellbeing and an average level of income per person. Nevertheless, the price, which will be paid is too high. Despite the fact that the government will develop new strategies on environment protection, the nature cannot recover as fast as it is being destroyed. The use of pollution controls just proves the inability of the government to make a stand against businesses and start to cooperate with the science in order to implement already developed ways of receiving energy. The economic system is built on the basis of consumerism. The more is produced, the more people will buy. Accordingly, this is the closed circle, which council fraud against human rights.
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Everyone has a moral right to live in a safe environment regardless of the country they live in. People are told to be born free. They come in this world with nothing and leave also taking nothing. The only thing that remains is the memory about those, who accompanied the person during the life. The best feeling of freedom is the ability to breathe in deeply and understand that the air is fresh and it does not cause tingling in the lungs. If the sun is up in the sky, no one is afraid to drink water from the river. However, the fact is that instead of living in peace with nature, people are using its resources and call this "progress". Of course, it is great that one can fly on a plane and reach London from Rome less than in an hour.
The most important obstacle is that the time to use new technologies has come. Humanity has developed enough gadgets that can make people's life easier. Technologies can be used in order to optimize the production and make the level of pollution much lower. In addition, the government should try to revise cooperation between businesses. This will happen only if both government and businesses will change priorities and values, so that the key point in work will be sustainable development.
As an option, all wealthy nations in cooperation with developing countries can involve all interested scientists to create a simple pollution control device. In addition, with the help of technologies they can improve existing systems of recycling. The government will develop the plan of production control. Synergistically developed processes will help avoid the over-pollution stage. The best way to reach this is dialog. If this idea is implemented, those regions, which are already polluted must be left for a particular period in order to give them the opportunity to recover resources naturally. Nevertheless, one of the biggest issues for the government will be a big number of unemployed people, who will look for the job.