The Lead Story
A Romanian mine has dumped a new load of pollution into the Tisza River, less than three weeks after the same mine spilled some 20,000 tons of lead, zinc, and other metals into the river, which flows through Hungary before reaching the Danube. On Sunday, heavy rains and melting snow washed away part of an earthen wall at a dam operated by the Baia Borsa mine, allowing additional tons of contaminated water to rush into the Tisza. The mine operators had not properly mended the wall after the earlier spill. On Monday, lead concentrations in the Tisza were three times European Union safety levels. A massive cyanide spill from a different Romanian mine in late January devastated the Tisza, killing hundreds of tons of fish and polluting the drinking water for millions of people.