Warehouses with toxic wastage

There are many warehouses (16 storing uranium, 54 obsolete pesticides, 2 storing cyanide in our region) situated on the banks of rivers. There was a release from a pesticides warehouse that killed fish in Son-Kul, which is a high-altitude lake (3,016 m above sea level, storage - 2.64 km3) in Kyrgyzstan TienShan in 1977.

Some examples follow. There is a large waste warehouse containing cyanide from gold mining (Kum-Tor area, 4,100 m above sea level, warehouse stores a total volume 100 million cubic meters, in an ice-gravel dump), see Fig. 1 (Torgoev et al., 2003). The Petrov-Davidov Glacier is situated above the dump and can destroy it, in which case all the waste will flow down to the River Ara-bel and on to the Narin River (length 807 km, average discharge 432 m3/s) (Torgoev et al., 2003). Such an event would endanger 80,000 riverside residents.

The second group are uranium warehouses in the Mailuu-Suu region (Uranium tailings in Table 1, especially numbers 3 and 7), which can be washed down to the nearby town and into the River Mailuu-Suu, endangering 48,000 riverside residents.

Third example is the largest sewage lake in former USSR territory, holding wastewater from both industrial and domestic sources (Izvestia Kazakhstan, 2006). It is called Sorbulak, in the district of Almaty. Its length is 15 km, width 82 m, and volume about one billion cubic meters. It contains heavy metals and other toxins. The security of lake is supported only by a sanddump, which is degrading year by year. There is a great danger of it bursting, as one did in 1988 in Jamankum, when 30 billion cubic meters were released. If it occurs in Sorbulak, several settlements would be washed away in 10-20 min, beginning with Kurty and Akchy, with a total population of about 50,000.

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