Chinhat Lindane Manufacturing Industries
Uttar Pradesh, India
water, soil, air
Potentially affected people:
The problemLindane is banned and severely restricted in over 50 countries but is still produced in India, China, Romania and possibly Russia. This toxic insecticide is ranked among the top chemicals of concern by the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Lindane production is an exceptionally dirty process, creating 9-12 tons of waste for every ton of lindane produced.
India has a total lindane production capacity of 1,300 tons per year, with two companies producing: Kanoria Chemicals and Industries Ltd (KCIL) with a capacity of 1,000 tons per annum (tpa), and India Pesticides Limited (IPL) with 300 tpa capacity.
Health ImpactLindane has been linked to breast and other cancers, and fertility problems. It is associated with skin irritation and nausea, and can even cause convulsions and death with high levels of acute exposure.
Current ActivityThe Industrial Toxicology Research Center (ITRC) in Lucknow, India has partnered with Blacksmith to conduct the bioremediation of an HCH-contaminated site in Ummaria Village in Uttar Pradesh, India. HCH or hexachlorocyclohexane is ranked among the top chemicals of concern by different global environmental regulatory agencies as exposure to it can cause severe health effects. This site was previously used for dumping HCH-muck by a nearby insecticide manufacturing facility and preliminary studies reveal the presence of 10-400 milligrams of HCH per gram of soil. Around 100,000 people have been adversely affected. The land for the pilot – experiment has been provided by the Industry (India Pesticide Ltd) itself.
A stakeholder group has also been constituted to monitor current efforts for remediation and come up with alternatives that could be explored to solve the contamination problem.