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May 19th, 2010

Ukraine: Report on HCB storage site Kalush

The report however covers 2 cases. First case on mining tailings. From page 35, part 2 – HCB case .

UN-EC Technical Scoping Mission – Kalush (16Apr10)

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Joint UNEP/OCHA Environment Unit
Palais des Nations, CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland
Tel. +41 (0) 22 917 4419, Fax +41 (0) 22 917 0257, http://ochaonline.un.org/ochaunep

Some of the Conclusions:

Independent and scientific sampling has shown the spreading of HCB into the environment at
the HCB storage site. The concentrations in water at the storage facility are a factor 100 (and
in some places far more than that) higher than the Ukraine standard. HCB is extremely toxic
for water environments and is a persistent organic pollutant. The long-term risks of spreading
are therefore high.

Conclusions and recommendations:
Recommendation 5
Given the spreading of HCB, the UN/EC Technical Scoping Mission recommends to urgently
undertake a wider investigation into the extent of the spreading, including identifying
immediate risks for public health. This investigation should use quantitative method with
known detection limits for analysing HCB concentrations in ground, surface and drinking
water (including drinking water inlet points).

Recommendation 6
The mission recommends the urgent clean-up of the HCB storage site and the safe storage
and/or destruction of HCB. An evaluation of appropriate destruction techniques should inform
the actual clean-up. The clean-up of the HCB storage site and waste dump site should be done
with care in order to prevent the spread of soil and particles in the air. Toxic concentrations in
the air could spread across a wide area if the clean-up is not properly done.

Until the clean-up of HCB at the storage site has taken place, the site should be closed to the
public to prevent exposure. It would be advisable to fence the area and post signs stating
clearly that it is a dangerous site.

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The International HCH & Pesticides Association (IHPA) is an independent and non-political network of committed individuals that wants to draw international attention on the world-wide problems stemming from the production and use of HCH and other obsolete pesticides and its dangers for human health and the environment.

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