Isle of Wight ‘local legend’, and all-round nice guy, Paul Armfield may be better know to our supporters as ‘The Bhopal BeardPal’ thanks to his tremendous beard shave-off event, of a couple of years back, that raised us quite a few thousand pounds.
Paul has recently accepted the ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ on behalf of Bhopal. Needless to say, but our BeardPal carried it out with inimitable gusto, and something of a twist… so, if you are going to watch one more Ice Bucket Challenge film then I’d strongly recommend you make it this one! Paul Armfield’s ‘Ice Bucket’
The Bhopal BeardPaul ‘Paul Armfield’ before, and after, his beard shave off.
A strong, passionate rap, from B.Dolan, an American rapper, spoken word artist and activist from Providence, Rhode Island with some very interesting lyrical content about Union Carbide and erstwhile CEO Warren Anderson. As an activist, B. Dolan is known as a co-founder of Knowmore.org, a wiki devoted to connecting consumers with social responsibility information about corporations.
The track is FREE to download so please pass it on. You can hear it & download here: Lucifer R.S.V.P
The lyrics are below (includes some ‘bad language’)
I’m from the murder capital
Where we murder for capital.
Where the powerful stay silent
as thousands lay dying.
What kind of evil would let people drown in their lungs?
Bury their daughters and sons down in the mud?
Place the blame with the fortunate ones
The same who made a profit from agent orange
Sprayed Vietnam with napalm
Mutations for generations in the places they bomb
But escape to the states to evade law
Like December 3, 1984
40 tons of lethal gas leak from a factory in Bhopal
Safety catches turned off by the company boss
More than 20,000 dead and negligence was the cause
and 100,000 more were injured and stillborn
and the rat fuck to blame for it all
ain’t never had a day in court.
Private jets take off
Arrive in the U.S.
Where they send in a bomb threat if you harbor a ‘terrorist’
Body count of Bin Laden times ten
Got a million dollars house in the fucking Hamptons…
And his name is Warren Anderson…
929 Ocean Ave.
Bridgehampton NY 11716
When the doctors on the ground
Who were treating the sick
Needed to know from the CEO
of chemicals that choked victims in their hospital beds,
they begged for Mr. Anderson to put a stop to the death
He was response-able but not non-responsive
didn’t choose to save people.
Lucifer knew the truth but he called it a trade secret
Flew the coop,
Paid off the bail easy.
Supposed to be in hiding but thanks to the DMV
the location of a snakeden is still public information
got with any car registration
so you ain’t hard to reach…
Run and tell the State Department “No justice no peace!”
For the Butcher of Bhopal and all killer companies
for the cocktail party.
Send your R.S.V.P. to:
111 S. Catalina Ct.
Vero Beach, FL 32963
Calling all cars, calling all cars…
This is an APB: mass murderer at large…
Be on the lookout for a black cadillac
with a white man inside
sitting on fat stacks.
Calling all cars, calling all cars…
This is an APB: mass murderer at large…
Give the dead rest,
Give victims the truth
or don’t get upset when chickens come home to roost.
This guys got a lot of houses…
4 Sound Shore Dr. #6
Greenwich, CT 06830
6001 N. Highway A1A PMB 8091
Indian River Shores, FL 32963
Noorderlicht 2014 focuses on restless spirits. In a contemporary parallel to the vision of the Frisian author Jan Slauerhoff, the main exhibition looks at people around the world who want to think ‘outside the box’ and who, dissatisfied with the status quo, set out in search of alternatives. This year’s exhibition features Alex Masis’ outstanding project ‘Bhopal’s Second Disaster’ and will shown in The Netherlands and Singapore, during the Noorderlicht 2014 International Photofestival and the Singapore International Photography Festivals respectively.
Noorderlicht PhotoFestival, 31 Aug – 26 Oct 2014
For Noorderlicht, photography is a socially inspired medium which functions as a window on the world and can play a role in social discussions and processes. Our visual documents attempt to provide critical insight on current issues. With engagement and passion for the medium Noorderlicht brings Dutch and international audiences into contact with high-quality, socially committed photography from around the world.
Singapore International Photography Festivalhttp://www.bhopal.org/wp-admin/post-new.php
Singapore International Photography Festival is a biennial gathering of minds from around the world with the common pursuit to advance the art and appreciation of photography. It aims to be a much needed arena for critical thought and academic discourse on photography in Southeast Asia
The Motley Fool is a multimedia financial-services company that offers a wide range of stock news and analysis at its free website as well as through a variety of paid investment advice services.
On 28th August the Motley Fool posted an article entitled 3 Reasons the Dow Chemical Company’s Stock Could Fall. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine that Dow’s refusal to address the Legacy of Bhopal would be one of those reasons and, in fact, this article lists it as the number one!
The Motley Fool says: ‘Unfortunately, Dow Chemical hasn’t taken responsibility for its subsidiary’s actions 30 years later — and it takes a rather arrogant stance against the Indian legal system.
‘The company doesn’t once mention the word “Bhopal” in its most recent 10-K (annual report to the Securities & Exchanges Commission). Instead, it lists UCC’s potential to have more asbestos-related suits (pending and future claims totaled $501 million at the end of 2013) filed against it in the United States (from the past 30 years) as its most likely source of legal action in the near term. There may not be much the company can do three decades after Bhopal, but there are still thousands living with permanent disabilities related to the disaster. Should international courts get involved with increased interest during the upcoming 30-year mark, then Dow Chemical could be forced to pay settlement fees, fines, or into a fund for the disaster.’
Interestingly, despite Dow’s claims to the SEC, the US asbestos related suits will NOT be its next legal action.
In fact Dow is summonsed to appear in the Chief Judicial Magistrates Court in Bhopal, on 12th November, where it must explain why it does not produce UCC to face the criminal charges outstanding against it (culpable homicide).
But, we believe that the Dow Chemical Company might actually perform better, financially-speaking, by taking a temporary hit on its share price.
A company this size can easily afford to settle all of the claims relating to the disaster- and then, later, profit from the increased good will toward it especially in the Indian market. In the meantime, Dow is already being harmed in material ways, the impacts of which are steadily increasing, although Dow’s management seems to be doing a fine job of keeping this reality away from its stakeholders.
This spring Dow excluded a shareholder resolution on the issue even though shareholders, including a US based investment fund, presented a body of evidence of the increasing financial, operational and reputational impact of Bhopal upon Dow. Dow management were able to get the resolution excluded from Securites & Exchange Commission 2014 proxy materials, just three days before they were due to be published.
To summarise, findings presented by shareholders to the SEC:
1. Bhopal has prevented Dow from pursuing a $5 billion strategic investment in India, whose specialty chemical sector is predicted to grow 17% annually and become the 4th largest market globally over the next decade.
2. Dow’s own documents show that the company has lost at least $300 million in Indian between 2008-16 due to Bhopal.
3. The Bhopal legacy has caused Dow’s Core Brand rating to fall 300% in six years, during which time Dow has made it into the top 20 corporations targeted by activists globally.
4. Dow management continues to mislead shareholders and regulatory authorities by denying that Bhopal is causing any financial, operational or reputational impact upon the company.
For these reasons, the Motley Fool article should be taken as a timely warning to all investors and shareholders.
This December marks two very important anniversaries. Whilst one marks the day where thousands of lives would be irreversibly and tragically changed, the other marks the publication of the Bhopal Medical Appeal’s first appeal, exactly ten years after the 1984 explosion at the Union Carbide pesticide factory in Bhopal.
As Tim Edwards, the Executive Trustee of the Bhopal Medical Appeal, writes in the BMA’s latest letter to supporters, ‘Publication was risked on the wavering hope that this was not a world without care. Nothing really prepared us for what happened in the following days. People from all over Britain responded in such numbers that our volunteers were entirely overwhelmed.’
Since this first appeal, 20 years ago, the funds generated by our supporters kindness and generosity have helped open and sustain the Sambhavna Clinic and the Chingari Trust Rehabilitation Centre in Bhopal. Our supporters should take pride in what they have accomplished, with their help we hope that these clinics will continue to help those in Bhopal who still suffer from the ongoing affects and contamination of a disaster that continues to take its toll.
In Tim’s most recent letter he thanks all our supporters and donors who in some way have been a part of the success of these clinics, giving a short recap of the history of the Sambhavna clinic and its necessitated importance to the gas survivors, and their families, in Bhopal. He also provides a brief glimpse to what supporters can expect in our much anticipated Autumn Newsletter, which will look back at the developments and achievements in Bhopal that would never have been made possible if it weren’t for all those who have made contributions to the Bhopal Medical Appeal.
This December will mark the 30th Anniversary of the Union Carbide factory disaster in Bhopal. If you would like to find out more about our plans for the anniversary, or if you would like to support us or get involved please contact us here.
On the 15th of August children, teachers, staff and family members at the Chingari trust celebrated Independence day commemorating the India’s independence from the British Empire on the 15th August 1947. some of the children at Chingari were chosen to march in a procession before the national flag was hoisted by Apa and Didi (Rashida Bee and Champa Devi Shukla). There followed a small speech by Apa and Didi and an educational and cultural programme for the children. This featured a a song sung by Zaid and Kasheesh, a group performance by Alisha, Kausar and Afreen and a tabla (percussion instrument) performance by one of the Chingari children, Devesh, who played the tabla in five different styles. To finish of the celebrations a small skit on patriotism, where Shifon played the character of a soldier fighting for his country. all the celebrations were accompanied by refreshments for the children. Videos of some of the festivities can be seen below.
The Dow Chemical Company and Bhopal’s Second Disaster
The Dow Chemical Company (Dow), as the successor company to the Union Carbide Corporation (UCC), has a clear case to answer regarding an ongoing contaminated water disaster in Bhopal.
This disaster is a major public health issue affecting tens of thousands of poor people in the slum areas surrounding the abandoned Union Carbide pesticide factory.
It is the second disaster to befall Bhopal and is a separate matter from the 1984 Bhopal Gas Tragedy. There has been no settlement of any kind, no compensation has been paid, and there has been no attempt at meaningful environmental clean up.
There is no connection to the $470m payout made by Union Carbide in respect of the civil case pertaining to the Gas Tragedy.
The US courts accept that this ongoing contamination issue is distinct from the 1984 Gas Disaster and the ‘polluter pays principle’ sees Dow, as the successor company to UCC, liable for the contamination.
Bhopal’s Second Disaster- Facts:
The groundwater aquifer in Bhopal, around the abandoned Union Carbide factory (site of 1984 Bhopal Gas Disaster), is heavily contaminated with highly toxic chemicals.
This contaminated groundwater has been the primary drinking water source for tens of thousands of people for many years and, in some cases, since before the Gas Disaster. Although a local government scheme has seen water piped in to many of the previously affected communities these supplies can be intermittent and unreliable leaving the communities with no option other than to use the contaminated water.
A full contamination survey has never been performed and, in areas where there is no piped, or other supply, an unknown number of families still use the contaminated water as their primary water source.
The chemicals leaching in to the water are highly toxic. They attack all of the body’s organs, some are known carcinogens, and other cause birth defects.
The contamination is being caused by water leaching through toxic waste that was buried on the factory site and by leakage from solar evaporation ponds located just outside of the factory site.
The solar evaporation ponds are known to have been leaking years before the disaster (an internal Union Carbide memo from 1982 reveals this).
Union Carbide was aware of the environmental and groundwater contamination, after carrying out tests in the area, but chose to keep the findings of these tests secret.
The toxic contamination of the area only became public knowledge when Greenpeace tested the area and published a report, in 1999, labeling the area a ‘global toxic hotspot’.
The US courts accept that the water contamination is a separate issue from the gas disaster.
Dow Chemical, as current owner of Union Carbide, is responsible for the continuing contamination.
All supporting documentation available on request.
Dow’s Defence Exposed
Dow:“Union Carbide Corporation (UCC) and Union Carbide India Limited (UCIL) settled their liability for the gas release tragedy with the Government of India in 1989 and paid $470 million to the Government of India. This settlement was upheld by the Indian Supreme Court.
FACT: The water contamination has nothing to do with the gas tragedy. This settlement covers injuries caused by gas exposure and DOES NOT cover birth defects or any liabilities arising from subsequent and continued contamination of the environment or groundwater. The water contamination, as acknowledged by the US courts, is a separate matter to the 1984 Gas Disaster.
Dow:“The Bhopal site was owned and operated by UCIL, a separate, publicly traded Indian Company. With the approval of the Supreme Court, Union Carbide sold its interest in UCIL in 1994 and UCIL was renamed Eveready Industries India Limited – a company that continues to operate in India today and is the company that was involved in the tragedy.
FACT: In 1984 the Bhopal factory wasoperated by Union Carbide India Limited (UCIL) but, Union Carbide Corporation (UCC), a US based company, always retained the controlling interest in UCIL with never less than 50.9% of the stock. Union Carbide is now a 100% owned subsidiary of Dow- with Dow executives sitting on its board.
As Dow themselves point out, UCC sold its shares in UCIL in 1994- a full ten years AFTER the disaster- and thus retained control of UCIL until that point. Dow’s own statement acknowledges that both UCC and UCIL were liable for the disaster. If they accept the courts ruling, regarding the settlement, then they must accept their culpability.
UCC, for its part, consistently argued that UCIL was an entirely separate corporate entity. UCC also repeatedly claimed in the courts that it was purely a US-based corporation and denies that it had ‘operations’ in India or elsewhere outside the USA. However, UCC’s 1984 annual report stated: “Union Carbide Corporation’s business worldwide is conducted principally through the divisions, subsidiaries and affiliates listed below.” One of those listed was UCIL, which was also included in UCC’s consolidated balance sheet for the same year.
Dow:“Dow acquired shares of Union Carbide in 2001, seven years after UCIL became Eveready Industries India Limited. Union Carbide had no assets in India at the time of the transaction with Dow. Dow never owned or operated the UCIL plant site.”
FACT: Union Carbide is now a 100% owned subsidiary of Dow. Under the ‘polluter pays’ principle, enshrined in the law of both the US and India, Union Carbide is responsible for the environmental damage. Under the ‘successor liability’ principle, also established in both US and Indian law, the current owner of UCC, Dow Chemical, is liable for the continuing environmental contamination and the damage to people’s health caused by it.
In the takeover of 2001 Dow acquired all of Union Carbide’s assets AND its liabilities; and Dow has accepted Union Carbide’s liabilities in the US. Outstanding liabilities of Union Carbide are directly addressed by Dow representatives and, once paid, are registered as charges on Dow’s consolidated earnings.
FACT: In a 2006 speech to the UN Andrew Liveris (Chairman and CEO of Dow) said: “Water is the single most important chemical compound for the preservation and flourishing of human life… “And yet today, more than a billion people are in peril every day because they do not have enough water or the water they have is unhealthy. Lack of clean water is the single largest cause of disease in the world and more than 4,500 children die each day because of it.”