The recently released Investigative Report into the Riverton Dump has given Jamaicans critical insight into the environmental and public health disaster that was the March 7th, 2015 fire at the site. As mentioned in an earlier blog post, the report gives details of the management of the Riverton dump, highlights the impact of the fire, makes several important findings, and gives recommendations for moving forward.
Below are 5 key facts from the report:
- There have been 415 fires at Riverton between 1996 and 2015. Below find a breakdown of the number of fires per year during this period:
- NEPA conducted field visits to Riverton to determine compliance with its standards for the operation of the disposal site. NEPA’s last field visit before the March 7, 2015 fire was in February 2015. This inspection found only a 33% level of compliance for the disposal site, and a 50% level of compliance for the storage of hazardous waste.
- 257,567 people lived in areas that put them at “Very High Health Risk” due to the fire. An additional 60,398 people lived in areas that put them at “High Health Risk”.
- According to the report, smoke, smog, and the smell of the fire affected 47% of Jamaica’s population
- Extinguishing the March 7, 2015 fire required:
- 231 firefighters,
- 45 fire units,
- 7 utility vehicles,
- 9 tractors,
- and 9,500 truck loads of dry earth
To see the full report, click here.