Our Environment Trough Time

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  • The Panama Canal

    The Panama Canal
    Many species of rainforest animals and plants went extinct as a result of the Panama Canal construction
    This gigantic undertaking [Panama Canal], involving the destruction of formerly unbroken forest and the creation of Gatun Lake, approximately 164 sq. mi. in area
  • Libby, Montana Asbestos Contamination

    Libby, Montana Asbestos Contamination
    . Decades of mining the vermiculite exposed workers and residents to toxic asbestos dust.
    Known commercially as Zonolite, vermiculite was used in a variety of construction materials including insulation for homes and buildings
  • The Great Smog of 52

    The Great Smog of 52
    A period of cold weather, combined with an anticyclone and windless conditions, collected airborne pollutants mostly from the use of coal to form a thick layer of smog over the city.
    It led to several changes in practices and regulations, including the Clean Air Act 1956.
  • The Love Canal

    The Love Canal
    the site had formerly been used to bury 22,000 tons of toxic waste by Hooker Chemical Company
    By 1978, Love Canal had become a national media event with articles referring to the neighborhood as "a public health time bomb", and "one of the most appalling environmental tragedies in American history".
  • Castle Bravo

    Castle Bravo
    The code name given to the first United States test of a dry fuel hydrogen bomb.
    The blast created an international reaction about atmospheric thermonuclear testing.
  • Minamata Disease

    Minamata Disease
    It is a neurological syndrome caused by severe mercury poisoning.
    At first, It was caused by the release of methylmercury in the industrial wastewater from the Chisso Corporation's chemical factory
  • Silent Spring

    Silent Spring
    An environmental science book written by Rachel Carson.
    Silent Spring was a rallying point for the new social and environmental movement in the 1960s.
  • The Palomares Incident

    The Palomares Incident
    B-52G bomber of the United States Air Force's Strategic Air Command collided with a KC-135 tanker during mid-air refuelling at 31,000 feet (9,450 m) over the Mediterranean Sea
    The non-nuclear explosives in two of the weapons detonated upon impact with the ground, resulting in the contamination of a 2-square-kilometer (490-acre) (0.78 square mile) area by plutonium.
  • Eccocide in Vietnam

    Eccocide in Vietnam
    Nearly 20 million gallons of herbicide was sprayed on the jungles of Vietnam between the years 1959-1975
    Hundrets of acres of rice patty, jungle and farm land was destroyed.
  • Tragedy of the Commons

    Tragedy of the Commons
    "Commons" in this sense has come to mean such resources as atmosphere, oceans, rivers, fish stocks, an office refrigerator, energy or any other shared resource which is not formally regulated, not common land in its agricultural sense.
    The concept was based upon an essay written in 1833 by Lloyd, the Victorian economist, on the effects of unregulated grazing on common land and made widely-known by an article written by Hardin in 1968.
  • 1st Earth Day

    1st Earth Day
    it "brought 20 million Americans out into the spring sunshine for peaceful demonstrations in favor of environmental reform.
    It now is observed in 192 countries, and coordinated by the nonprofit Earth Day Network, chaired by the first Earth Day 1970 organizer Denis Hayes, according to whom Earth Day is now "the largest secular holiday in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year."
  • Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone

    Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone
    It is the largest recurring hypoxic zone in the United States.
    The size varies annually from a record high in 2002 when it encompassed more than 21,756 sq kilometers (8,400 square miles) to a record low in 1988 of 39 sq kilometers (15 square miles).
  • Environmental Protection Agency

    Environmental Protection Agency
    President Richard Nixon proposed an executive reorganization that would consolidate many of the federal government's environmental responsibilities under one agency, a new Environmental Protection Agency
    The EPA began regulating greenhouse gases (GHGs) from mobile and stationary sources of air pollution under the Clean Air Act (CAA) for the first time on January 2, 2011.
  • Door to Hell

    Door to Hell
    The Door to Hell is a natural gas field in Derweze, Turkmenistan that has been burning continuously since it was discovered in 1971
    The name "Door to Hell" was given to the field by the locals, referring to the fire, boiling mud, and orange flames in the large crater, which has a diameter of 70 metres (230 ft).
  • Amoco Cadiz

    Amoco Cadiz
    One of the largest oil spill of its kind in history to that date.
    4,000 tons of fuel oil being spilled into the sea.
  • The Seveso Disaster

    The Seveso Disaster
    The reactor relief valve eventually opened, causing the aerial release of 6 tonnes of chemicals, which settled over 18 km2 (6.9 sq mi) of the surrounding area.
    By the end of August, Zone A had been completely evacuated and fenced, 1,600 people of all ages had been examined and 447 were found to suffer from skin lesions or chloracne
  • The Three Mile Island Nuclear Explosion

    The Three Mile Island Nuclear Explosion
    It was the worst accident in U.S. commercial nuclear power plant history
    The partial meltdown resulted in the release of unknown amounts of radioactive gases and radioactive iodine into the environment.
  • The Bhopal Disaster

    The Bhopal Disaster
    was a gas leak incident in India, considered the world's worst industrial disaster.
    A total of 36 wards were marked by the authorities as being "gas affected," affecting a population of 520,000.
  • The Chernobyl Nuclear Explosion

    The Chernobyl Nuclear Explosion
    The Chernobyl disaster was the worst nuclear power plant accident in history in terms of cost and casualties. It is one of only two classified as a level 7 event
    Four hundred times more radioactive material was released from Chernobyl than by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.
  • The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

    The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill
    The amount of spilled oil is roughly equivalent to 17 olympic-sized swimming pools. Approximately 1,300 miles of shoreline were impacted by oil.
  • The Kuwait Oil Fires

    The Kuwait Oil Fires
    Immediately following Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait, predictions were made of an environmental disaster stemming from Iraqi threats to blow up captured Kuwaiti oil wells.
    Were caused by Iraqi military forces setting fire to a reported 605 to 732 oil wells along with an unspecified number of oil filled low-lying areas
  • Baia Mare Cyanide Spill

    Baia Mare Cyanide Spill
    The spill has been called the worst environmental disaster in Europe since the Chernobyl disaster
    After the spill, the Someș had cyanide concentrations of over 700 times the permitted levels.
  • E-waste in Guiyu, China

    E-waste in Guiyu, China
    Many of the primitive recycling operations in Guiyu are toxic and dangerous to workers' health with 80% of children suffering from lead poisoning
    Once a rice village, the pollution has made Guiyu unable to produce crops for food and the water of the river is undrinkable.
  • The Al-mishraq Fire

    The Al-mishraq Fire
    It was the site of the largest human-made release of sulfur dioxide ever recorded when a fire gained control and burned for about three weeks.
    The pollution in Mosul, which is about 45 kilometres from Mishraq, reached a catastrophic level. For over 48 hours the white smoke from sulfur dioxide could be seen in the air.
  • Jilin Chemical Plant Explosions

    Jilin Chemical Plant Explosions
    The explosions killed six, injured dozens, and caused the evacuation of tens of thousands of residents.
    An 80 km long toxic slick drifted down the Amur River, and the benzene level recorded was at one point 108 times above national safety levels.
    Polluted the Songhua River, with an estimated 100 tons of pollutants containing benzene and nitrobenzene entering into the river.
  • An Inconvenient Truth

    An Inconvenient Truth
    It is a documentary film about former United States Vice President Al Gore's campaign to educate citizens about global warming via a comprehensive slide show that, by his own estimate made in the film.
    An Inconvenient Truth has been credited for raising international public awareness of climate change and reenergizing the environmental movement.
  • Sidoarjo Mud Flow

    Sidoarjo Mud Flow
    At its peak Lusi spewed up to 180,000 m³ of mud per day
    To explain what triggered the mud volcano, three hypotheses have been suggested, though none has won universal support:
    Hydro-fracturing of the formation (reflecting a drilling problem)
    Fault reactivation (reflecting a natural event)
    Geothermal process (reflecting geothermal heating)
  • TVA Kingston Fossil Plant Coal Fly Ash Slurry Spill

    TVA Kingston Fossil Plant Coal Fly Ash Slurry Spill
    Resulted in a discharge of 140,000 pounds of arsenic into the Emory River.
    1.1 billion US gallons (4,200,000 m3) of coal fly ash slurry was released.
  • Deep water horizon BP oil spill

    Deep water horizon BP oil spill
    it is considered the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry, an estimated 8% to 31% larger in volume than the previously largest, the Ixtoc I oil spill.
    The spill area hosts 8,332 species, including more than 1,270 fish, 604 polychaetes, 218 birds, 1,456 mollusks, 1,503 crustaceans, 4 sea turtles and 29 marine mammals
  • Fukushima Daiichi

    Fukushima Daiichi
    It is the largest nuclear disaster since the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 and the second disaster (after Chernobyl) to be given the Level 7 event classification of the International Nuclear Event Scale.
    The damage caused by the tsunami produced equipment failures, and without this equipment a loss-of-coolant accident followed with nuclear meltdowns and releases of radioactive materials
  • The Three Gorges Dam

    The Three Gorges Dam
    The Three Gorges Dam is the world's largest power station in terms of installed capacity
    At full power, Three Gorges reduces coal consumption by 31 million tonnes per year, avoiding 100 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions,[67] millions of tonnes of dust, one million tonnes of sulfur dioxide, 370,000 tonnes of nitric oxide, 10,000 tonnes of carbon monoxide, and a significant amount of mercury.
  • Pacific Gyre Garbage Patch

    Pacific Gyre Garbage Patch
    7 million tons of weight
    Twice the size of Texas
    Up to 9 feet deep
    In the Great Pacific Ocean Gyre there is 6 times more plastic than plankton, which the main food for many ocean animals
  • The Shrinking of the Aral Sea

    The Shrinking of the Aral Sea
    The receding sea has left huge plains covered with salt and toxic chemicals – the results of weapons testing, industrial projects, and pesticides and fertilizer runoff – which are picked up and carried away by the wind as toxic dust and spread to the surrounding area.
    The land around the Aral Sea is heavily polluted, and the people living in the area are suffering from a lack of fresh water and health problems, including high rates of certain forms of cancer and lung diseases