Alex Masi - Bhopal Second Disaster

Almost three decades have passed since the infamous 1984 gas disaster caused by Union Carbide (now DOW Chemical) in Bhopal, but many local families are still living the nightmare that began on December 3, 1984.

Half a million people were exposed to the toxic cloud released from the plant and thousands died within a few weeks from exposure, while all of the safety mechanisms in place failed to work.
 
Its deadly legacy is not only affecting those who survived, but also their children, many of whom are suffering from severe neurological and physical disorders caused by the large-scale contamination of land and water that continues unabated today.
 
Toxic waste remains buried throughout the former Union Carbide industrial complex and is polluting the city’s underground water reservoirs. As many as 30.000 people are in danger from this contamination. To avoid the pollution they have to rely water that is expensive and many cannot afford.
 
DOW Chemical has recently been awarded a ten-year contract as a worldwide Olympic partner and as the official chemistry company for the Olympic Movement until 2020. The publicity deal, estimated to be at around US$ 150-200 million, come in addition to the US$ 7 million Olympic Stadium wrap in London, for which the Olympic Committee has been largely criticized in the past few months.
 
Since DOW’s acquisition of Union Carbide in 2001, for a staggering US$ 11.6 billion, the American corporation has refused to accept any responsibility for remediation of Bhopal’s contamination.





 

Clouds rise over the abandoned Union Carbide industrial complex in Bhopal, India, site of one of the world’s worst industrial accidents: a gas leak that killed over 20,000 people and whose effects are still felt today in the communities around the abandoned facility.






 

Eight year old Poonam enjoys the heavy monsoon rain in the Oriya Basti colony in Bhopal. When the monsoon rain falls every year, it seeps through the buried waste of Union Carbide and continues to pollute the area's aquifers.





 
 
A young boy is crying for attention inside a makeshift house in the impoverished Oriya Basti colony in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the former Union Carbide (now DOW Chemicals) industrial comple.





 
Mohammed Mohsin, 14, a boy presenting a severe case of cerebral palsy is being fed water by his mother inside a government hospital in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India. The boy was recovered for a critical case of mouth infection and teeth decay.





 

Rohit, 12, a young boy presenting a severe neurological disorder is washing himself in his home in the impoverished Oriya Basti colony in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the former Union Carbide (now DOW Chemical) industrial complex.





 

Meenakshi, 7, a young girl born suffering from a severe neurological disorder, is being washed by her brother in their home in the impoverished Oriya Basti colony, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the abandoned Union Carbide (now DOW Chemical) industrial complex.





 

A pregnant woman is moving around her flooded home in the impoverished Oriya Basti colony in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the former Union Carbide (now DOW Chemical) industrial complex.





 

Salman, 13, a child presenting a severe neurological disorder and blindness, is portrayed in his home in the impoverished Arif Nagar colony, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the former Union Carbide (now DOW Chemicals) industrial complex.





 

The remains of Union Carbide's control room (now DOW Chemical) is laying in full disrepair in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India.





 

Raj, 7, a child presenting a severe neurological disorder is being held by his mother, Poona Bai, 40, in front of their home in the impoverished Oriya Basti colony, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the former Union Carbide (now DOW Chemicals) industrial complex.





 

A woman is lifting her child on the streets in the impoverished Oriya Basti colony, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, near the former Union Carbide (now DOW Chemical) industrial complex.





 

A mother is drying her sweat while sitting with her child on the floor of Chingari Trust, a local NGO caring for disabled children in Bhopal.





 

Sachin, 14, a child with a severe physical disorder affecting his bone structure and legs, is entering his home in the impoverished Oriya Basti Colony in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, near the abandoned Union Carbide (now DOW Chemical) industrial complex. Photo:Alex Masi Rachna, 10, (right) a child affected by a severe neurological disorder, is riding the Chingari Trust's bus with her sister, Reena, 10, in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India, site of the infamous 1984 gas disaster.




 

Rachna, 10, (right) a child affected by a severe neurological disorder, is riding the Chingari Trust's bus with her sister, Reena, 10, in BhopaL