"Red Dust Worries Residents Near US Metals Plants"

"When the wind blows in this Texas Gulf Coast town, the rusty red dust that drifts from the nearby metals plant sometimes creates hazy storms of dust, coating lawns, trucks and traffic lights.

The dust, along with the red mud lakes that kiss Lavaca Bay, are reminders that the small town of Point Comfort and its Alcoa alumina factory are not far — industry-wise — from Hungary, where a red mud reservoir burst earlier this month, unleashing a massive flood of caustic red sludge that covered nearby villages and killed at least nine people.

Many say the disaster in Hungary is unlikely to happen here. But the United States' three alumina refineries — two in Texas and one in Louisiana — have their own pollution worries."

Cain Burdeau and Ramit Plushnick-Masti report for the Associated Press October 22, 2010.

SEE ALSO:

"Hungary’s Red Sludge Spill: The Media and the Eco-Disaster" (Yale Environment 360)

Friday, October 22, 2010