The World Environment Day is celebrated on June 5 every year by the United Nations for encouraging worldwide awareness and action for the environment.
The bursting of two dams at the Samarco mining operation, jointly owned by Vale and BHP Billiton, unleashed a flood of muddy waste which mostly leveled a village in Minas Gerais state. The massive mudflow left 10 people dead and an environmental aftermath polluting downstream waters.
Southeast Asian typhoon and forest fires, NYPD officer killed, Biden says he won’t run in 2016 | Oct. 21
The day in photos around the world.
The day is still dark when Edmo Rodrigues da Costa sets out in his 20-foot fishing boat, carefully maneuvering around clumps of trash and mounds of putrid sludge in the sewage-infested waters of Rio de Janeiro’s Guanabara Bay.
For 30 years, Costa has trolled the bay that will host Olympic sailing events in 2016, setting his nets by the pink dawn light, hoping to catch sea bass, Atlantic bigeyes and shrimp.
But slowly, year after year, the catches have diminished.
Growing cities, overuse of fertilizers and factory wastewater have degraded China’s water supplies to the extent that half the nation’s rivers and lakes are severely polluted. China aims to spend $850 billion to improve filthy water supplies over the next decade, but even such huge outlays may do little to reverse damage caused by decades of pollution and overuse in Beijing’s push for rapid economic growth.
China continues to suffer a pollution crisis, with Beijing shrouded in acrid smog. Authorities have introduced anti-pollution policies and often pledged to clean up the environment but the problem has not eased. In October 2013, clouds of smog blanketed Harbin in China’s Heilongjiang province. According to reports, visibility was cut to 33 feet.