Saturday, 31 January 2009

Japan - problems of environmental destruction and pollution

choose any two problems. Explain how each of your chosen problems has been caused.

Water poisoning
In 1956 there was a leak of organic mercury (methyl mercury) in waste from the Chisso Chemical Company plant at Minamata. The company produced nitrogen based fertilisers. The organic mercury was contained in waste water and led to a lot of fish and sea birds being killed. It also found its way into the food chain through seafood and affected the nervous system, leading to

Air pollution in Tokyo
Between 1950 and 1980 there were particularly high levels of sulphur dioxide particulates and other gases released through car exhaust emissions and the burning of household rubbish. Due to the short chimneys on heavy industry plants the dust and gas emissions fell on nearby towns rather than being carried higher into the atmosphere and dispersed in air currents. Burning coal in power stations releases sulphur dioxide and winds carried coal dust and dust from other raw materials into the air.

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