Humanitarian and Advocacy Information

mia farrow

mia farrow's images on flickr

|    PHOTOS     
|    FEATURES     

Follow Mia's blog

Click here to see my photo journal from Central African Republic and Chad
Read "The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas" by Ursula K. Le Guin
View a timeline of events in the humanitarian crisis in Darfur


« Newer Posts | Older Posts »

December 10, 2009

Warren Anderson, Worthy addition to the 'gallery of rogues'

On the night of December 3 1984, an explosion at the Union Carbide pesticide plant in Bhopal, India caused 40 tones of lethal gas to be spewed into the city of Bhopal. The incident caused the deaths of more than 20,000 thousand people and inflicted life-long illnesses and suffering upon some 120,000 survivors.

Warren Anderson, CEO of Union Carbide, received the 1982 safety audit of the Bhopal plant which identified 30 major hazards. He used the report to fix some of the problems in the company's twin plant in the U.S. but he chose to do nothing for the Bhopal plant.
On the night of the disaster, December 3, 1984, six safety measures designed to prevent a gas leak either malfunctioned, were turned off or were otherwise inadequate. In addition, the safety siren, intended to alert the community should an incident occur at the plant, was turned off.

After the disaster Indian police arrested Warren Anderson but he jumped bail and was flown by private jet back to the US.

With Anderson in flight from the law, his company abandoned the polluted factory site and refused to disclose the composition of the poisonous gas (the company still claims this is a trade secret), thus hampering medical treatment for the 120,000 people who are still sick. Survivors received between US$300-500 compensation each.

Dow Chemical took over Union Carbide in 2001, and it claims Union Carbide has "settled" the issue of Bhopal. But, twenty five years on, toxic chemicals continue to contaminate the water of Bhopal. Survivors are still demanding a cleanup of the site.
Anderson is wanted in India to face charges of culpable homicide over the deaths of 20,000 people. The Indian Government formally filed an extradition request with the US, but for the last 18 years India, reluctant to damage US trade relations, has not pursued the extradition of Warren Anderson. US authorities claimed they could not find Anderson but last year he was found. Warren Anderson lives in a luxury home in Bridgehampton, Long Island, New York. His yearly golf club membership is four times the average compensation for a Bhopal survivor.

«Newer Posts | Older Posts »