"Russians Debate Fate of Lake Baikal"

"Tough economic times have forced Russia into a difficult decision: To save jobs, is it worth risking an environmental treasure?

Lake Baikal, in southern Siberia near the Mongolian border, is the oldest and deepest freshwater lake in the world. Roughly the size of Maryland, Baikal holds one-fifth of the planet's unfrozen fresh water supply. ...

Environmentalists have battled for decades to protect the lake — and they have suffered a major setback.

The Baikalsk Pulp and Paper Mill, a Soviet-era mill that spilled toxic wastewater into Baikal for four decades, has reopened. The mill shut down in 2008 — presumably for good. "

David Greene reports for NPR's Morning Edition May 10, 2010.

Source: NPR, 05/10/2010