MP to file lawsuit against Windalco, following overflow of effluent in Rio Cobre

by October 18th, 2019

Member of Parliament for North Central St. Catherine, Natalie Neita, is moving to file a law suit against bauxite firm West Indies Alumina Company (Windalco), on behalf of the citizens who live along the banks of the Rio Cobre.

The move comes, as its reported that several persons have fallen ill, after using water or consuming fish from the contaminated river.

A massive fish kill was reported earlier this week, in the vicinity of the Bog Walk Gorge.

The National Environment and Planning Agency, NEPA, reported that the major fish kill at the Rio Cobre, is suspected to have been caused by overflow of effluent from the Windalco Plant.

Speaking with Irie Fm News, Ms. Neita says Attorney-at-Law, Senator KD Knight has agreed to represent the residents.

She says there needs to be proper investigation into the matter.

The MP adds that the lawsuit should also take into consideration the negligence of NEPA.

Meantime, the West Indies Alumina Company-Windalco says, it is monitoring activities to ensure that environmental standards are maintained.

In a statement today (October 18), the bauxite company says, while the National Environment and Planning Agency, NEPA and other regulatory agencies are conducting investigations, it continues to implement all required measures to secure the waterways from any kind of environmental impact.

The company says, this is being done through its Environmental Management Programme, and established protocols.

It says, the measures being applied include the creation of a berm to retard the flow of effluent leaving the facility; testing to ensure that values are in line with the NRCA standards; flushing of streams with fresh water at several different locations; and maximizing efforts to curtail the excursion itself from the holding pond.