Congo DR city poisoned by years of mining

Decades of copper and cobalt mining in
the Democratic Republic of Congo not
only transformed the landscape of the
city of Lubumbashi, but also caused
widespread concern over the health and
safety of the residents.

“High concentrations of toxic metals
cause respiratory disorders and birth
defects,” particularly in people living
near the mines, said toxicologist Celestin
Banza of the University of Lubumbashi.

The damage has spread through acids in
untreated waste released into nature,
polluting the air, the water, and much of
Lubumbashi, a city of more than two
million residents in the country’s
southeast.

Until recently, Lubumbashi was the
capital of Katanga province whose
fabulous copper wealth was first tapped
by Belgian imperial colonists early in the 20th century.

Last year, Katanga was divided into four
new provinces. Mining is prevalent in the
two southern ones.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s