Use of DBCP and relation to infertility
Dow produced DBCP (1,2-dibromo-3-chloropropane), a soil fumigant, and nematicide, which was sold under the names the Nemagon and Fumazone until the late 1970s. US banned DBCP in 1979 after it was linked to human sterility in California. But, Dow and three other companies continued producing the hazardous pesticide DBCP for years after it was banned and exported it to developing countries.
Animal testing had revealed that the product caused male sterility in rats and the companies knew about it at least since the 1960s, but concealed this information. They also neglected to report the related findings of reduced sperm and atrophied testicles of rabbits and monkeys in the information submitted for…show more content… The company, however, continued to market Dursban in developing countries, including India and claimed it was safe for humans and pets. In 2003, Dow agreed to pay $2 million - the largest penalty ever in a pesticide case - to the state of New York, in response to a lawsuit filed by the Attorney General to end Dow's illegal advertising of Dursban as "safe".
Acquisition of Union Carbide
The Bhopal Disaster of 1984 was the worst industrial disaster in the history of the world. It was caused by the accidental release of methyl isocyanate (MIC) from a Union Carbide India, Limited (UCIL) pesticide plant located in the heart of the city of Bhopal. UCIL was a joint venture between Union Carbide and a public/private consortium of Indian investors. The MIC leak killed thousands outright and injured anywhere from 150,000 to 600,000 others, at least 15,000 of whom died later from their injuries. The contamination due to the leak is still active and no cleanup has been done till now.
Despite the involvement of Union Carbide in a criminal case in India, location of the plant in the heart of the city and the disaster site still not cleaned up, Dow bought Union Carbide in 2001. The transfer of ownership led to complicating the issue of cleaning up the plant and its environs of hundreds of tonnes of toxic waste, which has been left untouched. Environmentalists have warned that the waste is a potential minefield in the heart of the city, and