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Monday, October 28, 2013

Pomona Burning

HI All
We have started placing photos of the Burning at Pomona Quarry on our Facebook page – see them on bambazonke nhasi

If anyone has taken any other photos today please send to Leanna so that she can post them and let readers know what the current situation is there

We have already had our first $100 contribution from one of our readers – FX Logistics – and a few comments

I Have spoken to Mr Chibanda from the City Council just now and he is out there trying to work out to sort things out expeditiously. The army has apparently send a bulldozer there now but they ideally need about 3

Lets make this happen today

Readers Comments: On Monday managed to get 10 proper masks donated by James North for the workers who are right on site trying to control the burning.  MM delivered on site, arranged closer water source with private resident for the trucks to refill and also approached graders on side of the Road to assist with moving dumped sand on site….I will always remember when the floods hit Brisbane 80 000 people and their trucks machinery etc. came to the rescue.  May everyone in our City work together to Help the Council with this disaster.   Kind regards Sharon

Just dropped the first hundred off from our company now... my son has been sent home from school with headache and nausea today and we live on Northwood Rise. I am sure it is all related!! I hope you get more funds in to get this out as even I am struggling to breathe, so the old and young will be effected much more. I have asked all my friends on FB to ask their companies to see if we can help you sort out this problem.

Once again I was horrified when I went for my morning exercise on Sunday and saw - from a considerable distance - a cloud so big it looked like Harare was under attack. Pomona dump is on fire and this is a major 'Air-Pocalypse' event. The swathe of toxic airborne matter from the fire was travelling in a south westerly direction over Alex Park and Avondale towards the city centre. 

I have said much about the hazards of burning leaves, but allow me to remind everyone how serious burning non-organic waste is. (This is also to the person who commented on my last letter that burning rubbish is better than having it littering the roadsides). 

Burning plastics which contain organochlorines such as PVC releases dioxins. Dioxins disrupt hormones in the body, and are extremely carcinogenic causing cancer, deformed offspring, reproductive failures, and auto-immune diseases. After release into the atmosphere they settle on crops and in our waterways. They are persistent, and last for years. In the body they accumulate in body fat and can be passed onto the unborn foetus. They accumulate in animals at the top of the food chain: i.e. humans!

The burning of polystyrene polymers - such as foam cups, meat trays, egg containers, yogurt and deli containers, releases styrene. Styrene gas can readily be absorbed through the skin and lungs. At high levels styrene vapor can damage the eyes and mucous membranes. Long term exposure to styrene can affect the central nervous system, causing headaches, fatigue, weakness, and depression.

Those are just two in the veritable soup of toxic chemicals that would have been released in the fire from discarded batteries, rubber tyres, etc.

The World Health Organisation announced last week that it has been scientifically validated that air pollution causes lung cancer - it is now considered more dangerous than passive cigarette or cigar smoke.

It's high time the authorities (police, fire, City Council, municipality, EMA) started taking public health seriously and implement a zero tolerance policy for environmental offenders. City management urgently needs to upgrade our waste management policies, and carry out pollution awareness campaigns. 

If you feel upset about being gassed out of your home, go and register your complaint to your local District Office, police station, fire station, or phone EMA on 792772 or 252087. The more noise we collectively make the quicker something will get done.

Dr Lisa Marabini
Director, AWARE Trust
Cell: 0712 886650

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