What can be done to revive the Bhopal branch?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that this is a fairly interesting question.  On one hand, I think that a full admission and public acceptance of responsibility and mishandling of the public trust has to be made by Union Carbide/ Dow Chemicals.  To a great extent, victims of the disaster still feel abused and poisoned by the lack of corporate responsibility.  So many suffer with so little having been given as compensation.  In order to move forward and potentially revive the Bhopal branch, something in way of accepting the past and helping to do right by it has to be done.

In terms of moving from this point, I think that cleaning up the toxic waste that still lingers in the plant's areas more then two decades after the disaster is needed.  While the corporations might have left the area, people still live there and ingest the water and breathe the air that is being polluted with remnants of toxic chemicals and remains of toxic gas.  A full and unmitigated clean up is required.  Levels of Mercury and other forms of poisoning are still present.  Children use the site as a playground.  It might do well for the plant's acceptance by the community if the company that takes over makes a special attempt to generate social services for the community members, a people that were literally wiped out and tormented by corporate negligence.  Once these steps are taken, I think that it might be wise for the corporation who takes over the plant to hire local people, the same people who were victimized by it two decades earlier.  Working with the community as well as outside agencies and activists regarding the latest technology in safety demands and ensuring that what is produced by the plant is environmentally sound and that which benefits the local community are all steps in which there can be a reviving of the Bhopal plant.  These are steps that the Dow Chemical/ Union Carbide people have not even begun to take, and in doing so, some type of reviving and doing right can be done.

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