Tata Steel Ijmuiden Accused of Dumping Mercury Illegally
Volkskran reported that steel manufacturer Tata Steel IJmuiden in the Netherlands discharges mercury into the sewer without having the necessary
Volkskran reported that steel manufacturer Tata Steel IJmuiden in the Netherlands discharges mercury into the sewer without having the necessary permit and the concentration of this illegal discharge is higher than would be permitted under a permit. At the beginning of 2019, the Environment Agency, the supervisor on behalf of the province of Noord-Holland, requested a list of all so-called substances of very high concern that the steel company emits and discharges into the municipal sewer via waste water. Only at the end of last year and in January this year did Tata Steel deliver the overviews to the regulator. North Sea Canal Area Environment Agency in a warning letter last week wrote that “The overviews do not yet contain sufficient data and reports from the company are incomplete. The information that has been provided shows, among other things, the illegal discharge of mercury. Please confirm what measures the company is taking immediately to comply with the requirements within one week.”
A spokesperson for Tata Steel says that in its own view the company does indeed have the correct license to discharge mercury. According to the company, the concentration was also not measured correctly. Furthermore, Tata Steel says it will do everything it can to reduce the emission of substances of very high concern.
Volkskran Report added “It also appears that Tata Steel is not doing enough to reduce the emission of substances of very high concern SVHC. For example, the steel manufacturer's reports show that measures have been taken to reduce emissions at only 17 of the 213 so-called emission points. In addition, Tata Steel does not take unusual incidents into account when taking measures. The emissions of ZZS due to the many unusual incidents have a significant impact on the environment, so measures to prevent unusual incidents must also be considered.”
Tata Steel IJmuiden has been under fire for two years now, because of the nuisance it causes time and again in the nearby areas and for violating permits. For example, the company Harsco, which processes residual products on the site of the steel manufacturer, caused enormous dust explosions, covering the surroundings with a thin layer of dust and graphite. Research showed that these graphite rains also contained substances of very high concern. Research by this newspaper has already shown that Tata Steel is allowed to discharge more toxic substances into surface water than is permitted by European standards. The company is also given permission to emit more than the European standards prescribe for the emission of nitrogen oxides at one of the factories.
Meanwhile, residents of Tata Steel in IJmuiden, together with other interested parties, have decided to sue the steel manufacturer and managers of the company for wilful and deliberate damage to people and animals. They hired lawyer Bénédicte Ficq for their declaration.