Wednesday, February 05, 2020

An environmental crime

A few years ago, a company lowballed a contract to dispose of toxic waste from the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter. So, they dumped it in a disused paper mill in Mataura, then went into liquidation - effectively dumping the problem on local councils. The waste is dangerous - it releases ammonia when exposed to water. So naturally, they left it right next to a river, which is now flooding, and the entire town has had to be evacuated as a result.

Shit like this is why we should not allow corporate limited liability. Here it has been used very explicitly to take the money and run, while leaving a giant mess for others to clean up. And at the moment, its actually threatening people's lives. If the law doesn't allow the former directors and managers of this company to be held accountable for this environmental crime, then it needs to be reformed so it can.