Mercury Recovery Facility
In 2-3 pages, please review and do a full study. This assignment will come from Chapter 5- page 5.4 “Mercury Recovery Facility…” In this study, briefly evaluate the information and your evaluation of the case. In addition, research the Internet and locate an incident that has a related occurrence to this incident. Please discuss and describe the entire case. Be sure to correctly cite all information and in accordance with APA formatting.
Mercury Recovery Facility
The mercury recovery facility case study is about how Mercury Refining Company (MERECO) handled its waste after recovering mercury from mercury containing wastes. It is revealed in this case study that after mercury had been recovered, the resultant waste, which still mercury-contaminated, was discarded on a tributary embankment. This, in turn, led to the contamination of the water and the general environment around the tributary. It is revealed that eventually, relevant authorities discovered high level of contamination in the region near the company and set in place strategies to reduce the level of pollution. According to the information provided in the case study, the cleanup process cost 11.5 million dollars. However, despite the cleanup, the area remained polluted.
This case study shows the effects of lack of proper waste disposal mechanism on the environment. From the information provided in the case study, MERECO did not put in place strategies that would have enabled it to efficiently handle its waste. After retrieving mercury from mercury-containing waste, the company simply dumped the resultant waste in the open providing an avenue for environmental pollution. For example, since the waste on the embankment of a tributary, it was easy to contaminate water in the tributary. In addition, since the water in the tributary was flowing, it increased the level of contamination in the region.
The mercury recovery facility case study provides an insight on how failure to have an efficient waste management system can have negative effects on the environment. For example, it is revealed from the case that an analysis of MERECO site by USEPA showed that the site was the most contaminated region in the country. The case study also provides an insight into the economic effect of pollution. Apart from making a region inhabitable, pollution is costly in terms of rehabilitation. It can be seen from the study that rehabilitating a populated environment is a costly venture. For instance, in this case, 11.5 million dollars were spent in an attempt to rehabilitate the site.
A similar case of the effects of poor waste management is that of Rawalpindi city in Pakistan. The Rawalpindi city is facing a waste management crisis due to lack of a proper waste management plan and strategy. Solid waste dumps are scattered haphazardly in the city as people dispose their wastes without any proper. The issue of waste in the city has been made worse by the increasing population in the city. The high level of waste in Rawalpindi city has resulted in an increase in diseases.
The two case studies highlight the negative effects of poor waste management and emphasize on the importance of having a proper waste management plan and strategy. They also show that there is need for legislation that guides people and companies on how to dispose waste to avoid environmental pollution. Having an efficient waste management enables society to avoid incurring huge costs in dealing with effects of pollution such as diseases as in the case of Rawalpindi city and environmental rehabilitation as in the case of MERECO
Basically, the mercury recovery facility case study shows how lack of an effective waste disposal mechanism results in the pollution of the environment. The case study also shows that environmental rehabilitation is a costly venture which does not guarantee complete restoration of the environment to its original state.
VanGuilder, C. (2012). Hazardous waste management: an introduction. Herdon: Mercury Learning and Information.