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Greenpeace Received Results of Analysis of Samples from Taimyr Reservoirs

Metal News - Published on Mon, 10 Aug 2020

Image Source: Greenpeace Taimyr Reservoirs Norilsk Nickel
Oil products were found in some of the water samples taken by Greenpeace in the Taimyr reservoirs. Water samples from the discharge from the tailing dump of the Talnakh concentration plant of Norilsk Nickel exceeded the established standards by 50 times. This was clarified despite opposition in sampling and significant delays in sample delivery, which could lead to underestimation of results. Employees of the Russian Greenpeace took samples of water, bottom sediments and coastal soil in the rivers Pyasina, Talovaya and Lake Pyasino near Norilsk. The analysis was carried out by an independent St. Petersburg laboratory LLC "Regionlab". In most of the samples, pollution with oil products was not detected, but this does not mean that the consequences of the accident for the Pyasina River and Lake Pyasino have been eliminated.

Soon after the accident, Roshydromet determined the content of oil products in Lake Pyasino 4.7 km from the mouth of the Ambarnaya River near the right bank at 338 MPC and 12 MPC on the left bank. Throughout June, Roshydromet recorded the content of oil products in the lake above 100 MPC.

The goal of the expedition was to establish the degree of pollution of Lake Pyasino and the Pyasina River about a month after the accident. The expedition of Greenpeace and Novaya Gazeta constantly faced opposition . Environmentalists and journalists were prevented from going out on the water, and when they did manage to sail down the river, representatives of the criminal investigation department, the Norilsk Nickel security department and, possibly, the FSB flew in by helicopter and seized fuel for the boat.

The containers with the samples were refused to be allowed on the flight at the airport several times. The spectrometer showed "the presence of sulfur (explosives)" in 7 of the 13 samples. Environmentalists and journalists were asked to agree on the transportation of samples with Norilsk Nickel, then with the police and Rospotrebnadzor.

Greenpeace managed to deliver the samples to the laboratory in St. Petersburg through two transport companies. Thus, due to obstacles, the samples went to the laboratory much longer than the prescribed period (for oil products - four days), which could affect the result downward. One part of the samples was delivered to the laboratory on the eighth day after collection (July 2), the other on the 26th day (July 20).

In addition to sampling for oil products in the Pyasina River and Lake Pyasino, on the morning of June 28, Greenpeace employees took a water sample from the discovered illegal discharge from the tailings dump of the Talnakh enrichment plant owned by Norilsk Nickel. This sample was removed and handed over to the laboratory on the second day after sampling, and it showed an excess of the MPC for anionic surfactants by about 50 times ( according to the fishery standard ). Such excess can lead to blooming of water bodies, a decrease in the concentration of dissolved oxygen and an increase in the content of hydrogen sulfide. The water becomes unsuitable for the life of the flora and fauna typical of these places. The water was also tested for metal contamination, it wasa significant iron content was found, three times higher than the MPC for the fishery standard. An increased sulfur content was also found.

Not exceeding the MPC, but a significant content of oil products was found in a water sample from the right bank of the Pyasina River, as well as in a sample from the right bank of the Talovaya River (this sample was taken as a control one a kilometer from the confluence with the Pyasina River).

It should be noted that petroleum products are generally not included in the composition of components typically found in natural water bodies: they simply should not be there.

Source :

Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Mon, 10 Aug 2020
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